At a meeting with party leaders, NIMD Director Roel von Meijenfeldt, and IEA Director Jean Mensa, Ghana's President John Evans Atta Mills has given credit to the opposition for making democracy flourish in Ghana.
The occasion provided a platform for the President and the party leaders to discuss the Presidential Transition Bill which will soon be subjected to parliamentary debate.
Welcoming the delegation, President Mills expressed his delight at the programmes lined up by the political parties, adding that the bi-partisan nature of the bill would allow for its smooth passage in parliament and make the parties more committed to the tenets of democracy.
The party chiefs included Dr Kwabena Adjei, Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC); the NDC General Secretary, Mr Johnson Asiedu-Nketsia; Mr Peter Mac Manu, immediate past Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP); Mr Ladi Nylander, Chairman of the Convention People’s Party (CPP); Mr Ivor Greenstreet, General Secretary of the CPP, and Alhaji Ahmed Ramadan, Chairman of the People’s National Convention (PNC).
Addressing them, President Mills said Ghana’s revered democratic credentials could only be sustained and enhanced on the virtues of multi-party democracy and consensus building in the country.
Democratic 'trail blazer'
He acknowledged that Ghana was a trail blazer in democracy on the African continent and called for strong co-operation and collaboration “to enable us to sustain and justify this gain”.
“I wish to commend all parties for their support towards enhancing the move to build on our democratic credentials. We in government will lend our support towards the success of this programme,” he pledged.
He said the programmes of any government could not be divorced from its political party, stressing the need to work together to demonstrate to the world that “power does not lie in the hands of one particular person”.
Commitment to advance democracy
The Executive Director of the NIMD, Mr Roel von Meijenfeldt, congratulated the President on his election victory, and lauded the State of the Nation Address delivered by the President last week, particularly where he stressed his commitment to work towards advancing democracy on the continent.
The Executive Director of the IEA, Mrs Jean Mensa, praised President Mills for meeting with the leadership of the political parties for the second time in less than one year.
“Indeed, this attests to your commitment to advance multi-party democracy and consensus building in our country. We are most grateful,” she said.
She also commended the President for his continuous support for other initiatives of the institute, namely, the Public Funding of Political Parties Bill, the creation of an Election Fund for Political Parties, guaranteed funding for the Electoral Commission, as well as the new Political Parties Bill.
“This is a rare but positive development in our country’s history and we are grateful. We have no doubt that with your support, all these initiatives will be implemented during your tenure of office,” she said.
More international support
Dr Adjei, on behalf of his colleagues, said because of instability in the country in the past, it did not receive support and expressed the hope that more international support would now be received to build its democracy.
Source: Graphic Ghana