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    Obour's speech on peace in Ghana after elections

    by Ghana Music.com
    posted Wednesday, 12 December 2012 17:49| 0 Comments

    Distinguished ladies and gentlemen of the press, I warmly welcome you to the MUSIGA voices for Peace Press conference.

    I would like to particularly thank you for responding to our invitation although it was on short notice.

    We have invited you here this evening to express our concerns as a Union and as responsible model citizens of our great country Ghana regarding the nation’s just ended Presidential and Parliamentary elections.

    You will recall that prior to the elections; the Musicians Union of Ghana took proactive steps to engage the civic space of Ghana to promote Peace before, during and after the elections.

    We in collaboration with other stakeholders put together the MUSIGA PEACE COMPILATION which saw the collection of peace songs from musicians all over the country in different genres and languages. One thing was clear, members of the union and Ghanaians in general cherish and value their peace.

    Distinguished ladies and gentlemen of the press, to further buttress our commitment and dedication to the cause of peace, we did not stop at just the peace compilation album but also put together two big musical peace concerts in Accra and Kumasi to further drum home the critical importance of peace. The final concert in Accra was on Saturday December 1st 2012 at the obra spot which has now come to be the epic center of political activity after the elections.

    Music played a major role in the general electioneering campaigns of almost all the political parties with the major political blocks, the NDC and the NPP massively engaging their supporters through the power of music. Gospel, Hip life and reggae genres became vehicles to carry key political messages to different target audiences.

    Music has therefore become a major political tool and we of the union are proud of this development over the past decade therefore underscoring the critical importance of the musician to the development of multi-party democracy. We therefore get very concern when after all the efforts put in by our members and other well meaning groups and civil society organizations, the very peace we preached and promoted seems to be under threat as a result of the very political process which music has played a key role.

    Distinguished members of the fourth estate of the realm, I will like to ask a simple question at this point, where do we go from here? CHAOS or COMMUNITY? I am very optimistic that our collective answer to this question will surely be Community.

    Yes the electoral process might have experienced some short comings, but our humble appeal to all stakeholders is that cool heads should prevail and together help find lasting solutions to the challenges confronting our nation without disturbing the peace architecture of our great nation.

    We the musicians Union of Ghana are calling on leadership of our great country to show leadership by reaching out to each other and together helping find lasting solutions to the challenges we are faced with regarding our electoral process. We believe that the issue at stake when addressed through the due process of the law will leave our great nation Ghana the winner.  Let us all see the challenges we face as a national challenge and not that of one political party or the other. It is only when we address the issues as a national issue that we are going to win as a nation.

    Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I would like to remind our political elite and indeed all Ghanaians that we do not only owe it a duty to ourselves as Ghanaians to continue to live in peace but owe it a sacred duty to the rest of the sub-region and Africa as one of the very shining examples of growing multi-party democratic state.

    I shudder to ask this question “are we busily working hard to protect our enviable status as a beacon of hope and an oasis of peace in Africa? Where are all our negotiation skills that we have placed at the disposal of neighboring nations who plunged into civil unrest and violent conflict? Ghana played significant roles in returning nations like Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast and Liberia just to mention a few to normalcy after years of violent conflict, why can’t we do it for ourselves.

    We the musicians union of Ghana believe in our own to help resolve our issues and therefore call on all the political leaders and great sons and daughters of our land like Busumuru Kofi Annan who mediated several high profile violent conflicts to step in and avail their negotiation skills and healing any wounds that might have arisen out of the just ended elections whiles the law courts deal with legal issues.

    We the musicians union of Ghana share in Dr Martin Luther King jr. a renowned Civil Rights activist ascertain that “ Our lives begin to end the day we decide to be silent about things that matter” We believe that Ghana matters and so are the challenges emerging from the results of the elections hence this press conference.

    Distinguished ladies and gentlemen I will like to admonish fellow citizens to develop the tendency to love and not to hate as darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

    Let us therefore develop love for each other no matter our political persuasion because love is the only tool capable of transforming an enemy into a friend. As we musicians say it, ONE LOVE!!

    In the event when we fail as a people to manage this current situation, our national lives would severely suffer from the consequences. The most vulnerable among society are our children, mothers, physically challenged persons and the aged.  Beyond this our economic and social lives as musicians would equally suffer.

    Some of us can recall what political instability did to night lives in Ghana during the late 1970’s and early 80’s  where curfews killed live band music leading to the near collapse of the music industry in Ghana.

    Now that we are beginning to witness some improvement in live music again we would like to use this platform to appeal for peace to prevail by all who are involved in the ongoing political tensions.

    To the President elect His Excellency John Dramani Mahama of the NDC and the Flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Danqua Akuffo Addo, Other political activitist and their supporters, we want to remind you of the many pledges you made to Ghanaians towards your commitment to peace before the elections.

    We are pleading  with you  to find the most decorous means to resolve the current situation.

    We know that you are all great friends, let your long standing friendship bond us all together and move forward with one commitment to PEACE.

    I will like to call on all supporters and followers of political parties to remain calm and let cool heads prevail. Let’s win together.

    God bless our homeland Ghana.

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