Assin North By-Election Victory Boosts NDC’s Confidence for 2024 General Election, Says Dr Kojo Pumpuni Asante

Dr Kojo Pumpuni Asante, the Director of Programmes and Policy Engagement at the Centre for Democratic Development-Ghana (CDD-Ghana), asserts that the National Democratic Congress (NDC)’s triumph in the Assin North Constituency by-election has bolstered the party’s confidence for the upcoming 2024 general election.

Dr Asante believes that the NDC’s victory in the by-election indicates their competitiveness and strengthens their position heading into the main polls.

While acknowledging that there are still many unresolved issues before the December 7, 2024 election, such as the New Patriotic Party (NPP)’s internal party primaries to determine their candidate, Dr Asante states that the Assin North election has provided the NDC with a sense of confidence in their ability to compete.

During an appearance on JoyNews’ Newsfile program, Dr Asante suggests that the NPP should learn from its mistakes in the by-election. He emphasizes the need for the party to reassess how it utilizes the advantage of incumbency and warns against using this position to create impunity among voters, as allegedly witnessed in Assin North.

Regarding the issue of vote-buying during elections, Dr Asante proposes conducting undercover investigations to expose those involved. He explains that it would be challenging to rely solely on individuals willingly reporting such cases, and therefore, proactive measures are necessary.

Dr Asante further expresses his view that it is not only about vote-buying but also about vote selling. He calls for the Special Prosecutor, responsible for dealing with politically exposed individuals, to intervene in these cases. He suggests that setting an example for citizens who accept money for votes is crucial. He also recommends employing undercover tactics to uncover these illicit activities, as people are unlikely to come forward voluntarily.

The Assin North by-election also witnessed instances of voter inducement, with some voters displaying money they claimed to have received from political parties or their representatives. However, politicians have provided various explanations other than the intention to influence voters for the distribution of such funds.

Experts have cautioned against such misconduct by political parties, highlighting its detrimental impact on the integrity of the electoral process.

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