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27.11.2008 Elections

Electorate urged to choose God-fearing leaders… To ensure peace, overall national development

By Sebastian R. Freiku, Kumasi - Ghanaian Chronicle

THE PRESIDENT and Senior Pastor of the Association of 7th Day Pentecostal Assemblies in Kumasi, Elder Enoch Ofori Jnr., has advised the Ghanaian electorate to vote in accordance with God's instructions, and choose God-fearing and able men as leaders, when they go to the polls on December 7.

He said Ghanaians would have to vote for men of truth and those that hate dishonest gains, saying that was the only yardstick used in electing national leaders to ensure, not only peace, but also the overall development of the country.

Elder Ofori lauded parliamentary democracy, and urged Ghanaians to let it work by electing leaders who are capable, God-fearing, honest and selfless.

The Pastor reminded voters that the Bible had never been behind in knowledge, as far as the advancement of the human society was concerned, hence a set of ethical rules for the head of state to promote the rule of law, checks against abuse of office, and ensure public accountability.

In a paper titled “How God wants you (voter) to vote,” Elder Ofori indicated that God cared so much about who led His people, in order that they lived in peaceful and orderly communities.

He said God wanted us to choose capable and competent men who measure up to the task and fear Him (God); leaders who cherished honesty and justice, and leaders who shun dishonest gains, which is what makes people susceptible to bribery and corruption.

The Senior Pastor referred the electorate to a set of biblical criteria, which he described as “Evergreen Guidelines” for choosing national leaders, as in Deuteronomy 17:15-20.

According to the Pastor, “the head of state must be of unquestionable nationality; he must have the mandate of the people; he must not amass wealth at the expense of the people; he must uphold the rules of law, and he must respect the principle of equality before the law,” pointing to righteousness as the key to a just society in which governments thrive.

Elder Ofori, as well, indicated that while God's guidelines for choosing national leaders play a major role, it was imperative that the vigilance and effectiveness on the part of the police and the Electoral Commission (EC), was particularly important for a peaceful election.

He referred to 2 Chronicle 15:3-5 and Hosea 4:6 to stress that the role of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) was biblical, and therefore not a recent invention, and urged the Commission to step up public education on elections and civic responsibilities of the citizenry, because “when people are taught their civic responsibilities, peace reigns,” and that “the people perish for lack of knowledge.”

In a related development, Mr. Joseph Osei Tutu, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Osei Tutu Construction Works, a Dunkwa-based construction firm, has appealed to Ghanaian voters to vote for peace and prosperity by voting for Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) flagbearer, as president to continue with the good policies and programmes of the Kufuor-lead administration.

The 74-year-old contractor predicted that the leadership of Akufo Addo would bring about prosperity and progress to the nation, and mentioned some of the prudent measures undertaken by the ruling government, as the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Free Maternal Health Care, Capitation Grant, School Feeding Programme, Metro Mass Transit, as well as the National Youth Employment Programme (NYEP), all of which have come to enhance the future of Ghanaians.

Meanwhile, Mr. Kwame Kyei Baffour, CEO of Unity Oil and Light FM in Kumasi, has called on Ghanaians to avoid chaotic situations during the elections as much as possible.

The occasion was an all-night intercessory prayer by churches in Kumasi last Friday, which event was jointly organised by Unity Oil and Light FM, during which all churches were brought together to pray for peace.

He said every Ghanaian owed it as a duty to help nurture our democracy, and enhance it for the benefit of the people in a peaceful atmosphere, reminding Ghanaians that peace was a function of attitude and behavior.

Kyei Baffour cautioned the media to avoid inflaming passions through their reportage and presentations on air.