President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo commemorated the 7th January Constitutional Day, marking the 32nd anniversary of Ghana’s Fourth Republican Constitutional dispensation.
On Saturday, 6th January speech ahead of the commemoration, President Akufo-Addo defended the country’s Constitutional governance and said Ghanaians by common consent, have agreed that the democratic form of governance is the most preferable and all must do everything possible to guarantee the longevity of the 4th Republic.
The President said he had spent all his adult life fighting for individual and collective rights and was gratifying to note that the nation’s adherence to democracy has not waned.
“We know that there are no quick fixes to the challenges confronting us and as we have seen in recent times, democratic structures of governance are capable of accommodating the most difficult of circumstances,” he stated.
“We have, happily, turned the corner on our economic situation, as we experience the rebound of the national economy,” President Akufo-Addo said adding: “We will continue to work strongly on the problems facing the nation, knowing that the solution, every four years, rests, in part, on the sovereign will of the Ghanaian people, when you exercise your power to choose freely your leaders to manage the affairs of the country.”
Democracies, according to the President, are grounded on viable elections and this year, “as we have done on eight other preceding occasions, we will go to the polls to elect the President and my successor.”
“No true democrat can disregard the importance of elections and the sanctity of the ballot,” he emphasised.
The President said it was in the collective interest of all Ghanaians to ensure that the rules and regulations for the conduct of this year’s elections are fair and transparent and that “we all develop respect for them, respect that should not be a function of whether you win or lose.”
“All stakeholders, that is the Electoral Commission, the political parties and their leaders, the electorate and the citizenry, should work to ensure the consolidation of Ghanaian democracy and help us maintain our pride of place on the continent as a model of democracy in Africa.”
“At the end of it all, there should be no lingering doubt about the legitimacy of the election and the winning candidates, after the process, should receive the unalloyed support of all. That is how we can strengthen our democracy and the peace and stability of our nation.”
President Akufo-Addo said he swore an oath on two occasions — 7th January 2017 and 7th January 2021— “to be faithful and true to the Republic of Ghana and preserve, protect and defend the Constitution. I shall continue to do just that.”
He warned that it would not be under his watch that any “adventurer will seek to torpedo the democratic path on which we are embarked.”
“I will help see to it that we have a free, fair and transparent election in December 2024. You have my word! Ghana will be the victor of such an outcome, not any individual party or candidate.”
The President urged Ghanaians to continue to embrace the basic values of the Constitution, founded on the principles of democratic accountability and respect for the rule of law, human rights and individual liberty and freedom, which the majority of Ghanaians believe must form the bedrock of the national development and individual prosperity.
“Yet alongside this freedom, we must, with the same passion and commitment, uphold our individual and collective responsibility to contribute proactively toward the greater good of society. This is the vision of a free society. No society can be truly free unless its citizens feel the need to embrace both liberty and duty, hard work and compassion.”
Ghana is considered a beacon of democracy and stability in Africa, and the celebration of Constitution Day should inspire Ghanaians even further to hold on to this enviable status.
Rex Mainoo Yeboah, ISD