The General Secretary of the Christian Council of Ghana has lashed out at tribal and ethnocentric campaigning that he says is creeping steadily into Ghana’s partisan politics.
Reverend Dr Kwabena Opuni-Frimpong has cited the two main political parties, the incumbent National Democratic Congress (NDC) and opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) as the main culprits.
Speaking Monday evening on PM Express on the Joy News channel on Multi TV, Rev. Dr Opuni-Frimpong said he has observed that the electorate are appalled by campaigning along ethnic lines.
“If they care to know Ghanaians are not very excited about the tribal card they are playing at the moment and if somebody can put a stop to it, it would be good for all of us,” he said.
He said effective governance will prove a daunting task for any party that wins the December elections, or any other election, by inciting one group against the other.
Campaigning on issues, he advised, “will make governance more workable” for the party that emerges a winner after the election.
His comments are a response to a widely condemned statement by President John Mahama during a campaign in the Upper West Region.
The President said because plans by his government are in the best interest of the people from the north of the country – Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions – it would be unfortunate to call for a change of government.
He said the opposition NPP did not have their interest at heart as his government does.
The comment has been widely criticised, with the Media Foundation for West Africa calling on the President to apologise for what it says are ethnic, divisive comments.
Speaking on PM Express, Reverend Dr Opuni-Frimpong campaigning along tribal lines has persisted for a long time, suggesting that it would be wrong to weigh in on the President’s recent comments.
“The two major political parties, the NDC and the NPP, all of them at the moment are playing the political card. Whether it is in the north, whether it is in the Volta Region, whether among the Akyems, all of them at the moment are playing tribal card,” he said.
He said this year’s election presents critical issues that all stakeholders must address before and after December 7.
He notes that apart from the unfortunate ethnocentric comments that both parties make, violent attacks by supporters of the party, as have happened recently, also presents a major challenge.