British, Canadian High Commissions deploy more than 100 election observers

British High Commissioner Iain Walker

The British and Canadian High Commissions are deploying more than 100 election observers to seven key areas of the country to monitor Election Day 2020.

International partners and friends of Ghana, the UK, Canada and Australia, say they are work together to ensure inclusive, safe and transparent election process. Through CODEO, the UK and EU are also funding and deploying a further 1700 domestic observers to key areas up and down the country.

British High Commissioner Iain Walker said: “Ghana has a proud democratic reputation which I hope will be enhanced through election 2020. As an impartial friend, our Election Observers will actively support Ghana’s ambition for an inclusive, safe and transparent election process.”

Acting Canadian High Commissioner Sara Nicholls said: “The Canadian High Commission is proud to join the UK in deploying observers throughout Ghana on Election Day as a demonstration of our commitment to advancing democracy around the world. Electoral observation missions are key contributors to the strengthening of democracy, and we are honoured to participate.”

The UK government has supported Ghana through the last seven elections and three transitions of power. Over these key moments in Ghana’s history the UK has seen the country’s democratic process strengthen. Ghana is recognised across the continent and the world for electoral excellence, and the UK wants to see this global reputation upheld in 2020.

In addition to observation efforts the UK government has, over the last year, led an election programme aimed at realising our shared ambition to see an inclusive, safe and transparent Election 2020 including: The UK is a key funder to STAR Ghana’s £1. 5m Election 2020 programme, which is funding 28 local civil society organisations across the country to promote peaceful, issue-based and inclusive elections. These CSOs have, amongst other things, worked to challenge hate speech, enhance media freedom, tackle vigilantism and increase inclusion.

Together the UK and the EU are funding and deploying more than 1700 domestic observers through CODEO across the country.

The Canadian High Commission has contributed observers to a number of Ghanaian elections, including those of 2012 and 2016. In collaboration with other friends of Ghana, participation in election observation has allowed the High Commission to collaborate to help ensure an inclusive, safe, transparent election process.

In anticipation of the 2020 elections, the Government of Canada has recently funded local organisations working to promote inclusive governance, peace and security in Ghana, including the African Women Lawyers Association (AWLA), the Gender Centre for Empowering Development (GenCED), the Henry Djaba Memorial Foundation (HDMF), the National Peace Council, SEND Ghana, the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP), NORSAAC and Youth Bridge Foundation.

Funded under the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI), these initiatives have supported the participation of women, youth and minority groups in governance, and increased women’s voices and inclusion in promoting sustainable peace and security, and preventing conflict.

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