Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey has said the outcome of the 2020 presidential and parliamentary elections have demonstrated that Ghanaians have internalised the belief in the ballot box, making the country a shining example to the rest of the continent of Africa.
The minister made the remarks when a Member of the European Parliament and Chief Observer of the 2020 European Union Election Observation Mission (EOM) to Ghana, Mr Javier Nart paid her a courtesy at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration on Tuesday, April 13, 2021.
Mr Nart took the opportunity to officially present a final report on the 2020 presidential and parliamentary elections in Ghana which contains about 18 recommendations and some other priority areas which Ghana should consider in consolidating its democratic gains.
The diplomat explained that the European Union attaches a lot of importance to Ghanaian democracy and election because “Ghana is a pillar of democracy in this region (Africa)”.
Ms Botchwey noted that “it is quite clear that Ghanaians have decided that we will remain on the path of democracy and that we will at all times want to be that shining star when it comes to democracy.
“So what has happened in the elections like I said it wasn’t probably 100 per cent but government and all stakeholders made sure that they performed their duties to ensure that it was as free, fair, transparent as possible”.
Ms Botchwey also took the opportunity to applaud the efficient work executed by the 2020 EU Election Observation Mission, with a team of nine election experts who arrived in Ghana on 31st October 2020 and stayed until the completion of the electoral process, and further mentioned the roles played by 40 long-term observers who joined the Mission on 7th November 2020 and were deployed across Ghana’s 16 regions ably supported by 30 locally recruited short-term observers on Election Day.
She also recalled with satisfaction the support extended by the EU to Ghana’s electoral development, demonstrated by the 2020 Mission, the third EU Election Observation Mission to Ghana, following the first one during the 2008 elections and the second Mission for the 2016 elections.
The minister reiterated Ghana’s commitment to promote democracy and the rule of law and informed that the recommendations from the final report of the EU Election Observer Mission will be taken on board in order to improve upon elections in the country.