President John Dramani Mahama on Friday said although no democracy could be perfect in the world, it provides ample opportunities for the people to make their own decisions.
He said apart from offering the people the opportunity to choose their own leaders through voting and other means of leadership selection, democracy also provides the people the chance to prioritize their development needs.
President Mahama said this during the 2015 launch of the Africa Watch Debates on the topic:”Democracy versus Development.”
The programme, which was organised by Group Jeune Afrique, a part of the Africa report and the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, provided the African elite with an open forum to discuss ideas and policies with a diverse audience.
Hosting the event in Ghana is described as apt considering the fact that Ghana had experienced authoritarian, military, transitional civilian and liberal democracy after independence.
Ghana has also experienced different economic strategies; such as state-led, privatization and economic restructuring economies based on natural resource revenues.
President Mahama said having experienced colonization, slave trade and other harsh measures; it was expedient as a social democrat to go for democracy that gave every citizen the opportunity to participate in decision making.
The President said although in Authoritarian regimes the execution of development projects were faster because of lack of consultations, it was also inimical as it could not serve the priorities of the people.
He said while Authoritarian leadership worked better in Singapore and Chile, bringing out the best of the people for development, the same could not be said about Iddi Amin’s Uganda, where development was totally and completely non-existent.
He said the African Authoritarian leaders did not succeed in bringing any meaningful development to the people but rather brought in brutalities and untold hardships to the people.
Comparatively, President Mahama said Authoritarian could be faster in decision making, but democracy was still held in higher esteem on account of the involvement of the people in decision making.
The programme was also attended by Ministers of state, Former Presidents of some African countries and former leaders of the United Nations. GNA