Alhaji Mohammed Mumuni, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, said once again Ghana would use Election 2012 to consolidate her democratic gains and deepen electoral credentials among the community of nations. He said the Government through the Electoral Commission (EC) was taking the necessary measures including compilation of biometric voter’s register to ensure free and fair elections. “The use of biometric voter’s register is key to Government’s determination to uphold the sanctity of Ghana’s electoral systems,” Alhaji Mumuni said at the opening session of the lessons learned workshop on: “West Africa – Peace Dividends and the Road to Recovery”, in Accra on Thursday. The workshop organised by Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC), forms part of efforts to bring policymakers, experts, researchers and analysts in the West African sub-region together to discuss matters which are crucial for the growth and prosperity of sub-region. Alhaji Mumuni reaffirmed Ghana’s stand that economic integration and collective development of West Africa could not be achieved in an atmosphere of instability, conflict and war. He said: “Therefore the pursuit of peace and security will continue to be given high priority in the conduct of Ghana’s foreign policy as they are essential for growth and prosperity. “It is our conviction that Ghana’s internal peace, security and development remain inseparable from sub-regional peace and stability”. Alhaji Mumuni noted that Ghana would continue to play lead role in sub-regional efforts at determining a comprehensive strategy of conflict resolution and crises prevention and addressing cross-border issues, and regional challenges to peace and security. Air Vice Marshall Christian Edem Kobla Dovlo, KAIPTC Commandant, said it was imperative for the sub-region to take stock of regional challenges to democratic governance and peace building processes in West Africa, in view of recent political developments across Africa. He stressed the need for regional policy makers to share specific lessons or experiences on past and recent political developments in selected West African countries. Air Marshal Dovlo said: “We must begin to discuss cross-cutting issues relating to some emerging security threats affecting the sub-region...in order to examine the efforts of ECOWAS in preventing and managing threats and conflicts, while building confidence in peaceful democratic transition”. He said workshop being attended by representatives of Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea, would look at the effectiveness of ECOWAS conflict management tools such as mediation and election observation processes. The President of ECOWAS Commission, Mr James Victor Gbeho, opened the three-day workshop, being attended by participants the five countries.
Source: Ghana News Agency