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We May Deny Visas Over Election Violence – US Warns Ghana

The United States Embassy in Ghana, has urged the leadership of political parties to call their members to order following recent eruption of partisan clashes.

In a statement, the US warned that persons found culpable of inciting political violence ahead of the polls, would face some form of sanctions as violence has no place in the conduct of elections.

This warning follows a clash over the weekend between some supporters of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), in front of the Nima residence the NPP Flagbearer, Nana Akufo-Addo, during a health walk organised by the NDC.

Supporters of the Parliamentary candidates of NDC and the NPP in the Wulensi constituency in the Northern Region, also clashed over the weekend, at a village called Garikpe in the constituency. This was after a similar clash in the Odododiodio constituency in the Greater Accra Region.

The US Embassy in its statement thus urged political parties to instead participate peacefully in the democratic process before, during and after the Election Day.

“In the period leading up to and following Ghana’s elections on December 7, we call on all actors to remain peaceful and respect the democratic process. We encourage all parties to make it clear to their constituents that any violence or attempts to use intimidation to disrupt the democratic process is unacceptable,” the statement said.

The Embassy also stated that, it “will consider all options to hold responsible those who incite political violence, including denying or revoking visas.” “The government of the United States does not support a particular candidate or a particular party. We support democracy.

We will continue to work with the freely elected government of Ghana, just as we always have,” the statement concluded.

Find below the full statement

Accra, GHANA – The United States condemns all political violence in Ghana, especially any violent acts directed at political candidates, their homes or families. While campaigns can be vigorous and sometimes contentious, violence has no place in the electoral process.

In the period leading up to and following Ghana’s elections on December 7, we call on all actors to remain peaceful and respect the democratic process. We encourage all parties to make it clear to their constituents that any violence or attempts to use intimidation to disrupt the democratic process is unacceptable.

The United States will consider all options to hold responsible those who incite political violence, including denying or revoking visas. The United States applauds Ghana’s tradition of peaceful, democratic elections.

The international community is working with the Electoral Commission, National and Regional Peace Councils, NGOs, civil society organizations, the media, the police and others to support Ghana’s efforts to hold credible and nonviolent presidential elections. We urge all to participate peacefully in the democratic process—before, during and after Election Day.

The government of the United States does not support a particular candidate or a particular party. We support democracy. We will continue to work with the freely elected government of Ghana, just as we always have.

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