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31.10.2004 Politics

CDD organises workshop for aspiring parliamentary candidates

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Kumasi, Oct 31, GNA - The Centre for Democratic Development (CDD) has planned several programmes to support the December 2004 elections to enhance electoral transparency, fairness as well as the legitimacy of its outcome.

They include programmes to monitor the pre-election scenario and possible abuse of incumbency, deployment of more than 7,000 people to observe the polls, organising media for a for the various political parties and conducting debates for parliamentary candidates. Dr Baffour Agyeman-Duah, Associate Executive Director of the CDD, announced this at a day's capacity building workshop organised by the Centre for 25 parliamentary candidates selected from the northern sector in Kumasi on Saturday.

He said the main purpose of organising the candidates' forum was to make the elections campaign relatively more issue-based and less personality driven.

"We are also interested in reducing the salience of ethnicity in Ghanaian electoral politics. Above all, we help the electorate to make informed choices at the polls."

Dr Agyeman-Duah said the workshop was the modest effort of the Centre to assist the candidates to tailor their campaign messages to the needs of their constituencies and in a manner that is consistent with the constitutional and democratic functions of a Member of Parliament. Dr Regina Adu Twum of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), speaking on "Ghana's Development Agenda", said the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS) aimed at ensuring macro-economic stability, increase production and gainful employment, support for human resource development and good governance.

She stressed the need for individuals and organisations to be actively involved in the implementation of the policy to ensure the attainment of its objectives.

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