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Ghana’s Democratic Credentials Praised by Professor Emeritus of Politics, Jeffrey Haynes

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In a recent interview with the Daily Graphic, Professor Emeritus of Politics at the London Metropolitan University, Jeffrey Haynes, praised Ghana’s democratic credentials and their impact on the country’s peace and stability. He commended Ghana for its religious tolerance and peaceful coexistence among various groups, which have added flavor to the nation’s democratic dispensation, making it a safe haven for investment and a beacon of hope in Africa.

Professor Haynes rated Ghana’s quality of democracy as relatively good, adding that nowhere in the world is democracy perfect. On a score of zero to ten, he would rate Ghana seven to ten. He emphasized that the relative peace and stability enjoyed by Ghana is the country’s strength, which it could leverage to suppress threats of violence, particularly during election periods.

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While there have been discussions on various platforms for the 1992 Constitution to be reviewed, particularly the excessive powers of the President, Professor Haynes observed that he was not sure if the Constitution was re-written, much would change. He stated that constitutions are only as good as the people who implement them. He called on the citizenry to ensure that the structures of democratic governance work well, such as ensuring checks and balances at a higher level and keeping the government on its toes.

Professor Haynes suggested that more should be done to address human rights issues and weaknesses in Ghana’s democratic trajectory, including accountability and media freedom. He noted that among African countries, Ghana has a reputation as a safe haven for investors, and foreign investors can make a decent return on their capital, which is what they are looking for.

Professor Haynes’ interest in politics in Ghana began when he wrote a Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) thesis on the topic: “Rawlings and the Politics of Development Policy in Ghana, 1979-1986.” He worked on the PhD between 1984 and 1988 and successfully completed it. His interest was stimulated by the approach to politics of underdevelopment under the regime of Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings.

In conclusion, Ghana has received high praise for its democratic credentials, which have contributed to the country’s peace and stability. However, more needs to be done to address human rights issues and weaknesses in the nation’s democratic trajectory. The citizenry must ensure that the structures of democratic governance work well, and the government must be held accountable. Ghana remains a safe haven for investment, which foreign investors can leverage to make a decent return on their capital.

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