President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has charged political parties to find ways to accommodate one another to champion the development of the nation.
He said the country had undergone a long and tortuous journey to achieve consensus in a multi-party democracy, adding that the current stability enjoyed since the inception of the 4th Republic must be protected.
Delivering the 2022 State of the Nation Address (SONA) at Parliament on Wednesday, March 30, 2022, President Akufo-Addo denounced suggestions that coup d’états were the answer to the nation’s problems.
“We came through a long and tortuous journey to arrive at today’s consensus on a multi-party democracy, but the last twenty-nine (29) years of our 4th Republic have shown that this has been the most productive period since our independence,” he said.
“There is work to be done on building our institutions, but our democracy is worth fighting for. It is up to us to find a way to accommodate each other and our differences to make things work for the benefit of the Ghanaian people,” the President added.
President Akufo-Addo expressed worry over the resurgence of coups in the West Africa sub-region, saying that the political instability in the region led the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to its current stance of zero tolerance for military coups.
He said Ghana must use its position as Chairman of ECOWAS as well as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council to work towards achieving lasting stability in the region.
“We, in Ghana, know the cost of instability; it leads to the exodus of our artisans and professionals, and the emptying of teachers from our schools,” he said, adding, “We do not want to be an island of peace and stability in a region of turmoil.”
The West Africa sub-region has been hit by a spate of coups in the last two years, with the region recording three successful military takeovers over the period.
Burkina Faso, Guinea, and Mali have all seen the government overthrown and replaced with a military junta.
Burkina Faso, Guinea, and Mali have since been suspended from ECOWAS, with the West African bloc demanding a return to democratic rule in the shortest possible time.
At the end of another summit in Accra on Friday, March 25, 2022, the 15-nation bloc demanded the finalisation of an acceptable transition timetable by Mali’s military Government no later than April 25, 2022.
The bloc cautioned that it would slap punitive measures on the Government and the National Transition Council (CNT) if they failed to meet the demand.
ECOWAS also asked Burkina Faso’s military junta to free former president Roch Marc Christian Kabore from house arrest by Thursday, March 31, 2022, or risk more “individual sanctions”.
The bloc also demanded Mali’s military junta, which seized power in 2020, to stage elections within 12-16 months.