Diplomat says Liberal democracy should reflect needs of society

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Daniel K.Osei
Daniel K.Osei

Mr Daniel K.Osei, the President of the Council on Foreign Relations—Ghana, says liberal democratic governance across the globe must reflect the needs of society to ensure sustainable growth.

“Liberal democracy today and its discontents reflect the danger of viewing society in static mode.The dynamic changes that societies undergo at any period affect the way political systems work,” he said.

Mr Osei said this at a lecture organized by the University of Ghana ALUMNI Association on the topic: “Liberal Democracy: The New Utopias and the Age of Disorder.”

He said there was no liberal democracy that was not in trouble and attributed it to the disconnect between citizens expectations for participation and a changing definition of decision-making power.

The Diplomat stated that, historically, once the Governments were elected, they were empowered to take decisions and were assessed every four to five years.

“However, with the advent of social media and the speed of dissemination of information and disinformation, burgeoning groups are competing with governing elites, while nationalists and religious fundamentalists are subverting liberal democracies and remaking nation states in their own images,” he said.
At the multilateral level, he said, Governments no longer enjoyed the latitude of negotiating abroad on global thematic issues and implementing them at home.

Liberal democracies today, he said, needed to find ways of engaging and consulting their citizens to be assured of buy-in for implementation after signature.

Statistics show that the majority of elected politicians globally do not represent the aspirations and needs of their citizens.

He said it was imperative for Governments globally to be assertive and respond to the aspirations of their citizens.

That, he explained, was critical because the political governance system hugely impacted development.

He called for constitutional reforms, the strengthening of anti-corruption institutions, and efforts to increase women’s and youth’s participation in the governance structure.

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