The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), in the quest to promote a free, fair and successful District Level Elections (DLEs) on December 17, 2019, has called on electorates and the media to promote the success of the exercise.
A statement signed by Mr Edmund Kofi Yeboah, the General Secretary of the Association and copied to the Ghana News Agency noted that while calling on the electorates to turn out in their numbers to vote, it also encouraged the media to focus more on the processes leading to the elections in order to increase awareness.
"The GJA, with the support of Star Ghana, is implementing a local governance project dubbed: 'Enhanced Media/CSOs Partnership For Inclusive Local Governance' which seeks to strengthen the country's local government system," it said.
One of the key components of the project, the statement explained, was to promote the success of the upcoming DLEs.
Following a review meeting of the GJA Project Management Unit and some strategic partners held at Aburi in the Eastern Region, December 7, 2019, the GJA believed there was the urgent need for all stakeholders to get actively involved in order to make the elections successful, it said.
The statement explained that the Electoral Commission (EC) was mounting platforms for candidates contesting elections as district assembly and unit committee members in electoral areas across the country.
The rationale was to enable the electorates to engage the candidates on critical issues pertaining to the development of their respective electoral areas.
The GJA, therefore, called on the electorates to patronise the Platforms in their respective electoral areas to ask questions and know the vision of the candidates to help to develop an electoral area, adding that, it was the only way to make better and informed choices.
The GJA also urged the media to give extensive coverage to the Platform Mounting and make it a priority in their daily reportage to create more awareness on the DLEs.
It also encouraged the electorates and the media to contact the district electoral officers for information and clarification on the exercise.
According to the statement, media houses and practitioners ought to adequately prepare for the elections in respect of requisite human resource and logistics.
"Meanwhile, the GJA intends to issue official report on the outcome of the District Level Elections and so it urges all members of the Association to, in addition to reporting for their media organisations, observe the general conduct of the elections and submit their reports on same through the Regional Executives of the GJA.
"Guidelines for the GJA Election Observation will be made available to members through the Regional Executives very soon," the statement said.