Curious Minds, a youth-led non-governmental advocacy organization,has launched a peace campaign ahead of the 2020 general elections.
The campaign dubbed “Vote not fight” is being supported by Swedish Association for Sexuality Education (FRSU) and will run for six months; from August 2020 to January 2021.
The campaign is aimed at advocating for peace and active youth engagement before, during, and after the 2020 polls.
Speaking at the media launch in the Northern Regional capital, Tamale, Advocacy and Communications Officer at Curious Minds, Cecil Ato Kwamena Dadzie, said young people, forming the majority of the country’s population have a critical role to play in maintaining peace in the upcoming elections.
“Young people have a crucial role to play in maintaining the peace we enjoy as well as meaningfully contribute to the electoral process. Instead of being manipulated by politicians to fight for them, this campaign will see many young people research, read the manifestos, engage candidates, step out in their numbers to vote as well as track their [politicians’] promises and hold them accountable.”
“The youth of Ghana have a lot to contribute and should be seen as resources and not problems. Curious Minds would continue to set the young people’s development agenda and make the voice of the youth relevant in the corridors of power,” he stated.
Adiza Fuseini, a member of the Northern Regional Chapter of Curious Minds who is a youth peace ambassador for the campaign said the campaign comes to give impetus to the peacebuilding process in communities and consequently promoting an incident-free election.
“The peace campaign is an opportunity to strengthen the peace-building process to ensure a violent-free election as well as hearing the voices and views of young people from across Ghana and in the diaspora.”
She also hopes that manifestos will offer sustainable solutions to the many challenges of Ghana’s youth, particularly young women – unsafe abortions, unplanned pregnancies and sexual and gender-based violence.
Another peace ambassador, Mohammed Hafiz Musah said there is the need for young people to be engaged to make the election a battle of ideas.
“More engagements are needed especially among young people in rural and hard to reach communities, discussing the urgency to mobilize, share ideas and contribute meaningfully to the upcoming elections and beyond, to promote social and community development as well as national progress,” he indicated.
Curious Minds is hoping that the campaign, as a consequence, will lead to increased youth voter turnout and youth engagement with candidates.