My thoughts on partisan politics and elections

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Politics General Election
General Election

A GNA Feature by Hannah Awadzi,

Ghana has just emerged victorious after a keenly contested election. Usually before, during and after the elections, peace campaigns and messages flood our media spaces, since the electioneering are always filled with passion.

Gradually we are improving, many people have taken to social media to commend the Electoral Commission for a successful election.

I have personally avoided talking or making any politically related comments because of how people easily get tagged, sometimes an innocent comment breeds hatred, which can last for a lifetime.

I was also not really keen on voting, but this year, 2020, I decided to vote. To me, I was just going to express an opinion and contribute to the growth of the country.

Differing Opinions

My husband had voted earlier in the day, when I ask him which political party he voted for, he mentioned Party A, he knew I was not going to vote for Party A, I voted Party B but that got us teasing and anxiously waiting for who ‘spoilt their vote or not’.

At the end, when the election results were declared, my husband came home with vuvuzelas for us to play, it was a happy home.

Even though we disagree along partisan lines, we (my husband and I) do not think that partisan politics is enough to introduce into our homes the slightest of disagreements.

I respect and tolerate his political ideologies. Tolerance is key!

The above scenario is what I believe should characterise our partisan politics and electioneering. For me, it should not be who has the loudest mouth or who can insult the most, it is an exchange of ideas on how the different parties intend to move Ghana forward to the development we all want.

Development Journalism

As a journalist who is passionate about development, I am interested in politics because of one major question, which continues to linger on my mind.

How do we bridge the gap between policy and what actually gets implemented? I think Ghana has excellent and brilliant policies, which when implemented to the letter, could bring immense development to this country and make her an envy on the continent.

Yet, many of the policies remain on paper and this cut across sectors. I have many examples of policies written and talked about but their implementation is nothing to write home about.

During electioneering, political party manifestos spell out numerous policies to bring some relief and improvement in the lives of the people, however, most of these remain on paper when the parties win power. I always say that if even 50 per cent of a party’s manifesto get implemented, Ghana would be far ahead in terms of development.

Question is how do we translate these beautifully drafted and crafted policies into reality?

For me as a media person, first, it requires the political will to do so.

Having the political will to carry a party’s policies through could make a lot of difference. For example many were those who thought Ghana’s economy was not strong enough to support the Free Senior High School Education, but here we are, it is a reality because of political will.

As a media person, I believe my contribution should be how to ensure that campaign promises, and by extension policies, became a reality to support the marginalised and improve the general wellbeing of the people.

Putting my spotlight on the struggles of the average Ghanaian can make a lot of difference and serve as feedback to the politician to make informed decisions in policy formulation and implementation.

At this moment, I feel proud being a Ghanaian and may Ghana always win.

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