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2020 Electoral violence: Victims, families commit to work with police

BY: Emmanuel Bonney
Director of Advocacy and Policy Engagement  — CDD-Ghana
Director of Advocacy and Policy Engagement — CDD-Ghana

Election stakeholders have pledged to work together to ensure the speedy resolution of all violence cases recorded during the 2020 electioneering period.

The stakeholders include both state and non-state actors.

The decision is the outcome of a forum organised by the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana).

It was held with support from the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) in collaboration with the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) for the victims and families affected by the 2020 electoral violence.

Other supporting institutions are the Ghana Police Service, the National Peace Council, political parties and the media.

Project

CDD-Ghana, under its 'Post-Elections Accountability on Elections Security' project, has been tracking the status of electoral violence cases recorded in the 2020 elections in 11 constituencies from six out of the 16 administrative regions in Ghana.

The project seeks to advocate the speedy resolution of all the cases to engender public trust in the security and criminal justice system and limit the tendency for potential reprisal attacks in future elections.

As part of efforts to achieve this goal, the forum was organised to help bridge the gap between the victims/families and the State; security agencies and criminal justice institutions to engender trust among them in the pursuit of justice.

It also sought to provide the victims and affected families a safe space to share their stories and challenges in seeking justice while giving them access to credible information from key stakeholders on their respective cases.

Families

The participating victims and families recounted how the incidents occurred, the after-effects on their socio-economic lives as well as the difficulty in seeking justice.

The Chairperson of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), Ms Josephine Nkrumah, who doubles as the Chair of the Project Advisory Committee of the ‘Post-Elections Accountability on Elections Security’ project, said the wheels of justice moved slowly and the sharing of information and the search for peace were the elements that sped it up.

“What we require across the board is justice and compensation. Justice does not happen by chance.

“If you want justice, you must pursue justice. Ghana must transition from a period of violence associated with elections, to elections that come and go peacefully for all of us.