The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) has launched its pre-election debate series for the 2016 General Elections, with a call on the media to put aside their political affiliations and publish information that will not jeopardize the peace of the country.
A Senior Research fellow at the IEA, Dr Micheal Ofori-Mensah, who made the call, said the media is mandated to sensitize the public on policy issues to prepare them mentally for the forthcoming elections.
He further advised the media to promote the rights of the citizenry in demanding accountability from elected public officers.
This year’s debate series would see the IEA organizing two Presidential debates, and another for Vice Presidential candidates whose parties have representation in parliament.
The first Presidential debate will be held in the last week of September and the second in the third week of October. The Vice Presidential debate would also be held in the first week of October.
Addressing the media at a ceremony in Accra on Tuesday, Dr Ofori-Mensah revealed that the Institute would be exploring two new initiatives in this year’s debate series.
“There are two new initiatives under discussion towards the 2016 elections. First the IEA is exploring the possibility of holding a debate for the two main front-runners in the presidential election. The second is that we are at an advanced stage about holding a separate debate for candidates from political parties without representation in parliament,” he said.
Dr Ofori-Mensah explained that the initiative is geared towards providing a unique platform for Presidential candidates to outline their vision and to promote dialogue among candidates on their policies.
Furthermore, he said, the initiative would also allow candidates to point out the weaknesses in the policies of their political opponents and present viable alternatives.
Emmanuel Tawiah Forson, Onua 95.1 FM | 3news.com