The Institute of Economic Affairs has disclosed that all the presidential aspirants in the 2008 December elections have confirmed, in writing, their participation in this year's presidential debates.
The aspirants are Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, NPP, John Evans Atta Mills, NDC, Edward Nasigre Mahama, PNC and Paa Kwesi Ndoum, CPP. According to the IEA, a formal invitation to participate in the debates will be extended to the DFP, who recently elected their presidential candidate, in due course.
According to a press release signed by Jean Mensa, Administrator of the IEA, the presidential debate was part of the Institute's efforts to meaningfully contribute to the consolidation of multiparty democracy in Ghana and in furtherance of its tradition of providing a platform for dialogue and debates on key policy issues.
The invitation to participate in the presidential debates was sent out to the political parties, except the DFP, in January 2008 to debate and dialogue on key issues confronting the country prior to the elections in December.
The IEA is of the view that presidential debates are an effective way of involving the electorate to analyse the diverse plans that the various flagbearers have for the citizenry and enables them make informed choices on election day.
To the IEA, "Those who seek to govern must allow themselves to be subjected to probing questions by the people, to ensure that they understand their concerns and have the capacity to address them.”