President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has described as regrettable the violence that rocked the just ended by-election at Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency in Accra.
The president condemned it completely in a statement, and said it was unfortunate.
“The isolated incident of violence, which occurred in the early stages of the election, was unfortunate and regrettable, and I condemn it in no uncertain terms,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo in the statement congratulated the newly elected Member of Parliament for the constituency, Lydia Seyram Alhassan, who won the Thursday poll by landslide victory despite the confusion.
Some National Security Operatives allegedly fired gunshots at a polling centre at La Bawaleshie, injuring about six persons believed to be NDC supporters during the election on Thursday.
The NDC subsequently opted out of the race claiming they took the decision to forestall further attacks on their members.
President Akufo-Addo said the police are investigating the case and would deal with persons found culpable.
“The Police [service] is committed to conducting a rapid inquiry into the matter, and I expect all persons who are found culpable, at the end of the process, to face the full rigours of the law,” he added.
The violence that characterized the by-election has been widely condemned by civil society organisations including CODEO, UNDP among others.
“It is important also to state that the New Patriotic Party, the party from which my Government was born, would never dream of competing with any other political party in unleashing violence on the Ghanaian people,” the president added.
Former President John Dramani Mahama has sounded a word of caution to the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) advising them to desist from attacking members of the opposition National Democratic (NDC) else they’d be forced to show their true colours.
According to him, they will match the NPP boot for boot in the 2020 general elections if the NPP continues to intimidate NDC members with hoodlums and vigilante groups.
“We are not going to joke in 2020 and I’m sounding a warning to the NPP – we are going to match them boot for boot,” he said in reaction to the alleged attack on NDC members during the by-election in the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency on Thursday.
Below is the full statement from President Akufo-Addo:
PRESIDENT AKUFO-ADDO CONGRATULATES LYDIA SEYRAM ALHASSAN, MP-ELECT FOR AYAWASO WEST WUOGON
I congratulate Lydia Seyram Alhassan on her emphatic victory in Thursday’s by-election, in the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency. The electorate in the constituency has made an excellent choice, and I am confident she will serve their interests in Parliament with distinction.
The isolated incident of violence, which occurred in the early stages of the election, was unfortunate and regrettable, and I condemn it in no uncertain terms. A by-election should be a peaceful and happy event, no matter how competitive. The Police is committed to conducting a rapid inquiry into the matter, and I expect all persons who are found culpable, at the end of the process, to face the full rigours of the law.
It is important also to state that the New Patriotic Party, the party from which my Government was born, would never dream of competing with any other political party in unleashing violence on the Ghanaian people. Our policy, as espoused by the founding father of our political tradition, is “to liberate the energies of the people for the growth of a property-owning democracy in this land, with right to life, freedom and justice as the principles to which the Government and laws of the land should be dedicated in order specifically to enrich life, property and liberty of each and every citizen,” and that is what my Government is doing.
I commend the Electoral Commission for the professionalism it displayed in conducting a free, fair, transparent and credible election, despite the isolated challenge it faced.
The Ghanaian people have, again, demonstrated to the world their deep attachment to the principles of democratic accountability and the rule of law. Ghana’s democracy is robust, and will only grow from strength to strength.
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
President of the Republic
By: Godwin Akweiteh Allotey | citinewsroom.com | Ghana