GHANA ELECTIONS| REASONS WHY THE RESULTS WILL SHOCK YOU
Who else is ready for the elections to be over?
I’m tired of all the noise and accusations, the fear and backlash that comes with being affiliated to party A or B and because of it the hidden political bias of so many people who parade themselves as non- partisan but use their influence to push political agendas; but more than anything I’m tired of the insults that seems to be the signature of our politics.
Our elections, much like the U.S ( I never thought I’d be saying this) is standing on two things, the opposition’s insistence that the ruling party has run the country down, and the ruling party’s claim to have bettered the country. Who’s right comes down to your perception.
And this perception is a determining factor in the results, ah yes, the ALMIGHTY results.
Which is the essence of this post.
In my short time as a registered voter, I’ve watched parties praise Electoral Commissioners for efficiency when they’ve won and turned around to accuse them when they didn’t; which seems to be a recurring cycle.
Now whether this is true or not, we can’t negate the other important factors that determine election results, factors many people tend to over look.
The role of the media , for instance. It’s no news that the media all over the world is biased to a certain degree, and if you’re smart enough you can spot the propaganda carefully woven around the “truth”.
And in Ghana, the media seem to be on a “we run the world high” and because of this act as an authority over everyone.In my piece on who really RUNS Ghana, I spoke about the role of the media in controlling who we like,dont like and public perception.
They’ve become aggressively careless with the truth taking advantage of the illiteracy and lack of comprehension of a majority of Ghanaians who can’t read between the bias; which is extremely dangerous for a young democracy like ours and I shudder to think how far they will go if left unchecked.
On several occasions even I’ve been at the receiving end of their half truths and blatant lies, most recently, in a piece I wrote on being proud of my age after losing a friend in the same day, someone decided to change the caption to ” I’m single and proud”, and just like that it spread like wild fire, and no retraction or attempt at explaining my piece could change the information already out there.— But today it isn’t about me. So with this heavy influence the media is able to mislead the electorate, create paranoia and influence how people vote.
Below are other equally important factors that determine election results:
Your Ghana isn’t My Ghana,meaning your perception of how you see the country won’t always be the same for others. For instance you may believe the government of the day is terrible,but that’s only your perception,others may not share your sentiments even if they’re not vocal about it. So just because you believe in something doesn’t always make it everyone’s reality.
Accra is not Ghana,and I’m using Accra because it’s where I live, but it could be any major city where there’s a lot of political activity. Thanks to my job I’ve traveled to many places in Ghana, and realized just how extremely ignorant I’ve been about some of these places. You see a lot of us in big cities tend to measure the country only by where we live and never consider the other parts that may be very different from us. Yes Accra is the capital,and yes it’s the hub of nearly all the big industries and political activity, however it doesn’t mean whatever happens in Accra is the gospel of Ghana.
Social media votes don’t count : Just because someone ran a poll and your candidate won doesn’t mean he will win the election, opinion polls are just that OPINIONS. And some of these people who have an opinion don’t necessarily have a VOTE. It doesn’t take away the power social media has as a tool in winning an election, but it doesn’t guarantee a win either. The only thing social media has done successfully is give people a platform to express themselves in the way they otherwise wouldn’t through the power of anonymity. So the noise on social media doesn’t always match the actions in real life. A million followers doesn’t mean a million votes, it just means a million people follow the things you say, and not all because they like you.
Unfortunately too many people rely on social media to determine how they think the elections will turn out. Which is why there’s been instances where people have been extremely disappointed in the out come of an election because they placed too much confidence in social media and the internet as a whole. We sometimes forget that a majority of Ghanaians know very little about the internet and how it works, so the heavy social media presence you’re confident in represents just a small minority of Ghanaians.
The elite don’t vote. Yes the supposedly intelligent people, the ones who have something to say about nearly every policy because they are all knowing,DONT VOTE. Truth is many people are set in their ways when it comes to their political affiliation, and this gives both major candidates a 50/50 chance of winning. It’s the + 1 that is the deciding factor, and they are the floating voters, who I believe are the “elite”, the WE vote POLICY and not PARTY, they hold the key to one parties victory by a small margin.
But they usually don’t take advantage of this power, and as most elitist act, they feel too big to wait in line or stand in the scorching sun all day to do something as “insignificant” as placing their thumb on a piece of paper.They’ve managed to convince themselves that this “stress” is reserved only for the lower level people, who don’t have anything better to do with their time. So the real question is, who should do the “dirty” work for you? The people in line vote for themselves and not you, so if your candidate doesn’t win and you decide to place blame, don’t forget to look in the MIRROR.
People vote according to their POCKET. : This is what very few people will tell you or like to admit,but a lot of people vote according to how beneficial their candidate will be to them when they’re in power. In a perfect world people would vote for the well being of the majority, but in truth we’re all a little selfish. And because of this some people will NEVER vote for a party that’s seemly the right choice. This again comes down to perception and why you can’t trust public outcry or praise of any candidate.
When people get into the ballots, it seizes to be about anyone but themselves, all the noise of the world is completely shut off.
Voters are smarter than you think: Each time people get upset over politicians sharing cash, cars , rice other freebies votes I laugh. Truth is it’s nothing new, and any party that accuses the other has done it before, it just boils down to who has the most money at that time. But what I find amusing is how STUPID they think these voters are. See unless you’re holding a gun to their heads at the polling station , that rice doesn’t mean an automatic vote. It’s just a thank you, and maybe I’ll vote hoping I’ll get more when you come into power. Politicians like to feed on people’s lack of education, forgetting that education doesn’t automatically equate intelligence. If it did we wouldn’t have so many ignorant people parading themselves as politicians.
So that farmer you think doesn’t know the difference between inflation and interest rates, may know more than you think. He may not know the right term for it but you can rest assured that he knows how whether or not his/her life has changed over the years and probably why.
With that being said, may the best, smartest candidate win.
Photo Credit : EMMANUEL BOBBIE