The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has observed that West Africa had reached a milestone in the effort to entrench democratic values in countries in the subregion.
He said the recent election of 15 leaders in the subregion through democratic means was an indication that democracy was taking over.
Dr Bawumia said since democracy was triumphing, people who shared in the same values must redouble their efforts to entrench democracy, freedom and free markets.
“I think that in the area of democracy we are making progress.
In the 42-year history of the ECOWAS, all the 15-member states have democratically elected leaders and this is a good milestone that we have in the region.
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It did not use to be the case but today democracy is taking over,” he stated.
Dr Bawumia made the observation when he received members of the International Democrats Union (IDU) and the Democratic Union of Africa (DUA) who paid a courtesy call on him at the Jubilee House in Accra yesterday.
With support from the Konrad Adenaur and the Westminster foundations, representatives of the DUA from about 14 countries in Africa are in Ghana for a three-day meeting as part of engagements to build more partnerships, share ideas and experiences and align with one another.
The IDU is the international umbrella organisation for centre-right conservative political parties, with more than 80 political parties worldwide.
Dr Bawumia said as people who shared in the values of democracy, freedom and free markets, “these values must bind us all together and we want to see that succeed”.
Those values, he said, had historically been demonstrated to liberate and bring prosperity to the people and so “we share these values, we fight for these values and we want to see these values basically prevail because we care about our people”.
“That is fundamentally why we want to see these values prevail because they are values that underpin the systems that will unleash the productive capabilities of our people and enhance the welfare of our people,” he added.
IDU General Secretary
The General Secretary of the IDU, Mr Christian Kattner, in a response, said there was demonstrable energy in the organisation and the interest now was to expand it under the prerogative of freedom, democracy and free markets.
“Those are the three pillars of the IDU when we go around the world to align with like-minded friends and partners,” he stated.
Mr Kattner said the meeting would, among other things, help identify the progress made so far with respect to programmes of the union which were started about a year and a half ago as part of efforts to see what the IDU could achieve with the regional organisation.
He commended the government for doing enough to bring the country this far, saying: “You have brought your country to a very high standard and this is granting your people the best living conditions possible.”
Mr Kattner called for support for member IDU and DUA countries such as Tanzania where he said, the last few years had witnessed assassinations, killings and arbitrary arrests.
The Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr Freddie Blay, said the country was proud to be hosting centre-right parties and expressed the hope that the meeting would help the parties share ideas and help one another.