Professor Emmanuel Asante, the Chairman of National Peace Council, has urged Ghanaians to desist from engaging in politics that have the potential of causing harm to others and derailing the peace of the country.
Rather, he called for political discourse with a focus on issue-based discussions and exchange of ideas through public debates and forums.
He made the call at the launch of the ‘Watch Your Tongue campaign’ in Accra.
Professor Asante noted that the use of intemperate expressions had a potentially negative ramification of causing mayhem that would be injurious to the state.
“Political insults or intemperate language and treating others with scornful abuse or saying things that are not to be printed to fellow human beings bring a lot of problems and chaos in our peaceful world.
“In my view democracy calls for politics of ideas, that is public debates on political ideas of individuals competing for political power. In other words, in a democratic contest, our concern is competition of ideas rather than insult and abuse.
“Our politics should therefore be issue-driven rather than the trolling attacks on opponents,” he added.
He noted that sustaining the country’s enviable democratic and electoral peace would seriously be jeopardized if politics of insults were allowed to flourish.
“Our repetition of an oasis of electoral peace in democratic stability in the sub-region can hardly be sustained in the contest of politics of insult. We should therefore watch what we say, especially when on election campaigns”, he stated.
Reiterating the call for a more decorum political space to prevail, Mr Affail Monney, the President of Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), said the media had an imperative role to play to ensure that this was attained.
In an address on the topic “the tongue of a journalist”, the GJA president cautioned media owners and practitioners against allowing their medium to be used to disseminate derogatory messages that had the potential of causing mayhem and disrupting the country’s democratic peace.
He said the Association, therefore, strongly recommended the acquisition, buy or supply of delay broadcast equipment to all radio and television stations in the country Ghana.
“The GJA is ready to back any legislative effort in this respect. Peace, it is said is the ultimate of life and so under no circumstances should the peace of this country be sacrificed, on the altar or political campaign or devilish agenda,” he said.
He further urged journalists to be circumspect in their reportage in order to ensure that peace prevailed at all time.