‘Donors hint of stopping funding electoral activities’

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Donor partners have hinted of stopping support for electoral activities in the country. They said Ghana had been classified as a middle income country which has matured in its democracy in Africa and would not need that kind of funds.

The donor partners are the Department for International Development (DFID), Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) and the European Union (EU).

This was disclosed by the Programme Director of STAR-Ghana, Mr Ibrahim Tanko-Amidu, at a ceremony in Accra yesterday.

The ceremony was dubbed “An end of Election 2016 Call Partners’ Learning Events”.

The event brought together stakeholders of elections such as civil society organisations (CSOs), donor representatives, state actors, STAR-Ghana’s Election 2016 Grant partners and its steering committee.

2020 elections

According to STAR-Ghana, the donor partners want to focus on other areas rather than electoral projects.

As a donor-pooled funding mechanism, STAR-Ghana sought to increase the influence of civil society and Parliament in the governance of public goods and service delivery in Ghana.

Mr Amidu said though the donor partners had made significant contributions towards elections in the country, the context had begun to change.

“If by 2020 we do not have a mechanism like this to maintain the momentum, it would be difficult and challenging as an organisation to continue to perform its roles,” he said.

Mr Tanko-Amidu added that in 2016 the organisation, through its donor partners, awarded over US$3 million to 38 organisations, including civil society and media organisations, at the national and sub-national levels to help achieve credible, peaceful and inclusive elections, which contributed to deepening and consolidating democratic governance.

He encouraged the CSOs and partners to seek other means of funds in order to continue supporting and learning to benefit the country.

Good governance

For his part, a former Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC), Dr Kwadwo Afari Gyan, underscored the need to move from good elections to good governance.

He said though the country continued to enjoy good elections, little could be said of governance, adding that “a credible election is the legitimate entrance of democracy to ensure good governance and so more is expected from the government.”

He added that there was more to democracy than elections and explained that elections constituted a core technical work by the EC while its external activities covered the entire area in which the EC operated.

Appreciation

Dr Afari Gyan urged the participants in the two-day workshop to share both their good and bad experiences, with the reasons to maintain, change and see how the 2020 elections could be better.

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