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General News of Thursday, 23 August 2018

Source: 3 News

1992 Constitution not helpful to Ghana’s democracy – Samia

Former Chairperson of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) Samia Yaba Nkrumah has stated that Ghana’s current constitution does not aid in strengthening the country’s democracy.

According to the CPP Chair, the content of the 1992 Constitution has an influence on the mindset of citizens.

Speaking at the 5th edition of The Accra Dialogue on Wednesday, August 22, the former lawmaker stated that Ghanaians need to seek a change or an amendment to the constitution as it does not make all Ghanaian citizens equal before the law.

“The 1992 constitution is not helping Ghana’s democracy. We are all in Ghana as citizens, but not equal before the law,” she complained.

“I am mentioning this because whatever is in your constitution has a bearing on how you think; on our mindset, because this is our final means of reference,” she said.

The 1992 constitution is the supreme law of the Republic of Ghana, and it was approved on April 28, 1992 through a national referendum.

It defines the fundamental political principles, establishing the structure, procedures, powers and duties of the government, structure of the judiciary and legislature, and spells out the fundamental rights and duties of citizens.

Samia Nkrumah mentioned that the appointment of certain leaders in the country cannot be considered as democratic.

“Even the appointment of local leaders, even appointment of 40% of our local assembly members cannot be a show of democracy.”

She also said that the country cannot claim to be democratic when there is no freedom of information, and that the lack of this has created a burden on elections in the country.

“We cannot have freedom of speech without freedom of information; all these would have a burden on the climate of election.”

‘Voters’ register is a big problem’

Ms Nkrumah said the voters register is one major problem to the country’s election process.

She, therefore, recommended that the EC does not have to wait till election periods before reviewing the voters’ register.

“The voters’ register is a big problem…and we need to have control over those who are our citizens. I am hoping for a day where Ghana would have a citizen’s register,” she said.

She went further to say that the Electoral Commission must ensure transparency and accountability during elections because the outcome of elections affect a lot of people in a country, hence, citizens should be made to feel important in the country.

The former Jomoro Member of Parliament, however urged all Ghanaians to stay unified as that would lead to a better democratic governance for the rights of every citizen to be fought for.