As Ghana draw closer to the December 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary elections, more Ghanaians are interested in a peaceful election – prioritizing that over free and fair elections. This is according to a pre-election survey conducted between September 28 and October 16 2020 by CDD-Ghana and sponsored by USAID-Ghana.

In the key findings of the survey report, 53% of Ghanaians said they will prefer that the elections are entirely peaceful, even if it is not completely free and fair whiles only 10% said they will prefer that the election is completely free and fair, even if it is not entirely peaceful. 

It is however unclear how a peaceful election can result from a process that will not be deemed to be free and fair.

The pro-democracy civil society organization says the pre-election survey, initiated in 2016 generally aims to bridge research and practice to promote good governance. 

The key findings of the CDD-Ghana pre-election survey also reveal that Ghanaians are split 47% – 47% on whether Ghana is going in the wrong or right direction with 6% preferring not to share their opinion on the subject.

In a report released by CDD-Ghana ahead of Ghana’s election 2020, the think-tank says ‘’it aims at picking early warning signals by tracking citizens’ opinions on the overall level of the country’s preparedness for elections, public confidence in the competence, neutrality and integrity of election-relevant state and quasi-state bodies; and voter behavior, expectations, priorities and potential turn-out’’. 

Other important key findings in the report also include views on the electoral commission and other state election-related bodies where many Ghanaians think that the EC is well prepared ahead of the December 7 polls though they place more confidence in the preparedness of the military, media and police ahead of the electoral commission. 

Mrs. Jean Mensa, Head, Electoral Commission of Ghana

The report said 91% of Ghanaians believe the Ghana armed forces are more prepared for the elections, 89% believe the media is more prepared, 87% believe the Ghana police service is more prepared whiles only 83% believe the electoral commission is more prepared for the December general elections than the other election management bodies.

In the same report, CDD-Ghana also found that majority of Ghanaians are overwhelmingly positive in their evaluation of the EC’s integrity as an institution to deliver free and fair elections (65%) as well as the integrity or quality of the new voter’s register (68%).

The CDD-Ghana survey demographics included 78% Christians, 18% Muslims and only 2% traditionalists from 166 districts and 206 towns and villages across Ghana. Also, 48% of the sample population came from rural communities while 52% were surveyed in urban centers. All regions of Ghana were represented in the survey with a sample size of 2,400, yielding a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points at a 95% confidence level.

A man walk past election campaign flags on the street in Accra, Ghana, Dec. 6. (Sunday Alamba/AP Photo

The CDD-Ghana pre-election survey report, however, did not preempt the ultimate outcome of the 2020 elections in Ghana