As Ghana nears the 2020 general elections, issues of contention are expected to crop up between the political parties who will battle for votes come December 7, especially between the NPP and the NDC, the two major political parties.
Currently one of such issues is the argument on whether there should be a public debate between the leading presidential candidates, President Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party and former President John Dramani Mahama of the NDC.
Adding his voice to the discussion which is currently the most topical in the country, Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Ghana, Professor Ransford Gyampo, has alluded that the decision on whether Presidential Candidates get to debate or not, does not lie with the candidates but with the Ghanaian people who are the “ultimate repository of the sovereign power of the land.”
Reading from the history of previous presidential debates, Prof Gyampo bemoaned how it has become a trend in the country for presidential candidates who are sitting presidents to refuse to participate in a debate, whiles opposition candidates are quick to aggressively push for one.
According to him whiles some serious accountability mechanisms such as debates have evolved in Ghana’s political landscape, there is the need for such mechanisms to be institutionalized as there is a must for election winning to be solely a result of healthy contest of ideas in an institutionalized debating culture.
He shared his thoughts in a write up on his Facebook page.