Ghana’s 2016 NPP National Campaign Manager, Mr Peter Mac Manu, who was leading a team of Democratic Union of Africa (DUA) International Observers to Kenya’s General Elections to be held on Tuesday 8th August 2017, has been refused entry into Kenya. Some reports from Kenya indicate, his denial is linked to his role as Honorary Chairman of the Democratic Union of Africa, an umbrella body of centre- right parties in Africa which includes some opposition parties in Kenya.
It saddens modern civilization and efforts towards enhancing democracy in Africa, the ill treatment meted out to Mr Peter Mac Manu in Kenya. To promote human dignity, liberty, and the will of people, the world is relentlessly expanding and encouraging democracy at every corner of the world to guarantee equal access to human rights, freedoms and justice. Free, fair and transparent election is the only gateway to this true democracy.
As occupants one African continent, whatever happens in one country affects another country directly or indirectly. The 2007–08 Kenyan crisis was a political, economic, and humanitarian crisis that erupted in Kenya after former President Mwai Kibaki was declared the winner of the presidential election held on December 27, 2007. Supporters of Kibaki’s opponent, Raila Odinga of the Orange Democratic Movement, alleged electoral manipulation. This was widely confirmed by international observers, as being perpetrated by both parties in the election.
In part due to the ethnic and geographic diversity of Kenyan politics, no one narrative can explain the reaction of opposition supporters to the announcement of Kibaki’s swearing-in, which was done on December 30, 2007 in the evening. In addition to staging several non-violent protests, opposition supporters went on a violent rampage killing Kikuyus. This post-election violence led to the destruction of 1,300 lives and about 600,000 people were internally displaced. Many countries including Ghana had no choice but to deal with the influx of refugees.
Mr. Peter Mac Manu’s leading the Democratic Union of Africa (DUA) to observe the 8th August election of the people of Kenya was not a privilege but a mandatory duty in the interest of the people of Ghana, Kenya, and Africa. On the baseless allegations that he was there to rig the election and declare the results in favour of the opposition raises so many concerns and questions for the kind of democracy and strength of institutions in Kenya.
First of all, does the decision to block Mr Peter Mac Manu favours the will of the people of Kenya or one man? Will the election be free, fair and transparent if the government is the one who runs the election, chooses who observe and who doesn’t observe it? Is the Kenyan government saying that the Independent Electoral Commission and the security forces are so weak that one man can come from Ghana to rig and declare their elections? Is the government seeking to repeat the environment that led to the 2007 civil war? The world is watching. We will not give up on the will of people of Kenya. We share the same African destiny with them.
We call on all the international democratic institutions and governments, whose efforts have grown democracy this far to demand unqualified apology from the government of Kenya.
Mr Emmanuel Attafuah-Danso
The Young African Conservative Dialogue
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