A retired judge of the Appeals Court, Mr Justice Isaac Duose, has called on the government to deal with issues of poverty and illiteracy to end political violence in the country.
According to him, political violence, which remains a dominant feature in Ghana’s politics, needs to be tackled holistically by focusing on these two major factors for which people particularly the youth, allow themselves to be used in perpetuating cruel acts in the political setting.
At the International Conference on Party Politics in Africa last Friday in Accra, Mr Duose said a measured approach towards elevating the living standards of the people should be an agenda of which government as well as other stakeholders who seek an end to political violence in the country must pursue.
The conference was organised by the West Africa International Press Limited, which is a non-governmental organisation, on the theme: “Any future for party politics in Africa.”
In the view of Mr Duose, when the youth are well educated and have a means of livelihood, situations where political parties would use them to engage in political violence would be things of the past.
This, he said, was because they would be more enlightened to know the dangers associated in engaging in political violence and the consequences it has on the nation in general.
“If the youth are well educated, they cannot be fooled by any political party to engage in violence. However, if they are poor and have no means of livelihood, that is when you will see them building their muscles to be used as weapons in disrupting political campaign rallies, raiding collation and voting centres and snatching of ballot boxes,” he said.
For this reason, he urged the government to introduce more innovative initiatives in addition to the free SHS policy and the creation of Inner Cities and Zongo Development Ministry, so as to educate and transform the lives of children and youth in the country.
A lecturer at the University of Ghana who is also senior research fellow at the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), Professor Joseph Atsu Ayee, called for political parties to be reoriented to their roles in enhancing democratic governance in the country.