I’ll remove death penalty provisions from statute books if elected President – Mahama

  Wed, 29 May 2024
Headlines Ill remove death penalty provisions from statute books if elected President  Mahama

Flagbearer of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) John Dramani Mahama has promised to abolish the death penalty entirely if elected President in the 2024 Dec polls.

“In effect, I wish to give you my firm commitment, that during my tenure as President, Ghana will remove death penalty provisions from its statute books; substitute same for life imprisonment; and ensure that our country is regarded as an abolitionist state in line with both local and international law, treaties, and commitments,” Mr Mahama said in a speech read on his behalf by Madina MP, Francis-Xavier Sosu at the launch of the Amnesty International State of the World Human Rights Report 2023 and the Death Penalty Report on Wednesday, May 29 2024, at Fiesta Royale Hotel.

Mr Mahama also expressed his commitment to ensure that under his tenure as President, Ghana shall ratify the 2nd Optional Protocol of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) to ensure that death penalty is completely removed and never revisited.

Additionally, he promised to commute all 184 persons on death row upon assumption of office pursuant to provisions of Article 72 of the 1992 Constitution and in line with the NDC’s values as a social democratic party.

Ghana being a current member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, Mr Mahama said he believes the time is ripe for Ghana to improve its human rights profile by complete removal of the death penalty from the statute books and implement such legislation together with the other Criminal Offences (Amendment) Act, 2023, to proscribe witchcraft accusations, increased protection of persons with disabilities, children, vulnerable women and marginalised persons.

This, he noted, will ensure that “we preserve our democratic status and enhance our credibility as a country that believes in the rights of all persons, and have high human rights values and credentials within the sub-region and comity of nations.”

The former Ghanaian President congratulated all persons and institutions such as Amnesty International Ghana and sister CSOs and Institutions who have played enormous roles to ensure that the death penalty legislations are passed and removed from the statute books.