All set for the maiden edition of Ghana Speaks Debate in Accra

By Dennis Attuquayefio II Contributor
Announcements All set for the maiden edition of Ghana Speaks Debate in Accra

Great anticipation fills the air as CSOs, members of the diplomatic community, citizens, and stakeholders prepare for the much-anticipated "Ghana Speaks" debate, scheduled to take place on the 27th of April 2024 at the UniMAC Auditorium in Accra.

This youth political debate and dialogue series are expected to foster civic engagement and dialogue, promising to be a platform where diverse voices converge to discuss pressing issues facing the nation, as well as the alternative policies and programs proposed by their political parties to propel Ghana ahead of its current state.

The first edition, organized by a youth-led organization called the Legions, is expected to become a hallmark of democratic participation, encouraging citizens to actively participate in shaping the future of their country.

With a theme centered around "The Ghanaian Dream - Building a Sustainable Future," this year's debate aims to tackle critical topics ranging from economic development and social welfare to environmental sustainability and governance. Preparations for the event have been meticulous, with organizers working tirelessly to ensure a smooth and inclusive experience for all participants.

A lineup of distinguished panelists, including youth policymakers, academics, activists, and community leaders, will lead the discussions, offering insights and perspectives from various sectors of society on behalf of their parties. Six main political parties have confirmed their participation: the National Democratic Congress, New Patriotic Party, All People’s Congress, United One Ghana, Movement for Change, and Convention People’s Party. With Vincent holding the fort for the NPP and Julius Cobbinah debating on behalf of the NDC, The Movement for Change has Michael Sarfo Kantaka leading their policy engagement on the day, while the CPP's Comrade S.A Hammond takes charge of affairs for Dr. Nkrumah’s party. Rev. Bless Yao Viku of the APC will represent his party in this all-important debate, while Psamuel McBaah-Ayeh of the United One Ghana will be at the frontline for his party.

Through engaging debates, interactive sessions, and audience Q&A segments, participants will have the opportunity to exchange ideas, challenge assumptions, and propose innovative solutions to the challenges facing Ghana. Primarily, the debate will lead to the development of a youth-centric manifesto, which will be presented to all political parties for consideration in their 2024 manifestos. One of the key objectives of the Ghana Speaks debate is to promote transparency and accountability in governance by providing a platform for citizens to hold leaders accountable for their actions. With the motto "Guardians of Democracy," The Legions say they are poised to make an impact by facilitating and instigating positive change in Ghana’s political systems and discourse.

The Director of Programs for the Legions, Reigneth Patterson, believes the Ghana Speaks debate is here to stay and, more importantly, to instigate civic engagement and encourage meaningful political discourse and participation in Ghanaian democracy.

“As Ghana continues on its path towards progress and prosperity, events like the Ghana Speaks debate organized by the Legions play a crucial role in strengthening democratic values, fostering social cohesion, and promoting civic participation. By bringing together diverse voices in a spirit of dialogue and collaboration, we can collectively chart a course towards a brighter and more sustainable future for all,” she said.

As the clock ticks closer to the start of the Ghana Speaks debate on the 27th of April 2024, the excitement is palpable, reflecting the collective determination of Ghanaians to build a better tomorrow. In the words of one of our student activist groups participating in the event, "Today, we speak for Ghana, and tomorrow, Ghana speaks for us." The event will be livestreamed on various traditional and digital platforms, ensuring that all citizens have the opportunity to be part of this momentous occasion.