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General News of Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Source: Graphic.com.gh

Hold parliament accountable - Governance analyst

The Technical Advisor to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Dr Eric Oduro Osae, has urged Ghanaians to hold Parliament to account if it fails to amend Article 243 (1) to allow for the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives.

That, he explained, was because both the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in their 2016 manifestos promised to ensure the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives and, therefore, needed to live up to the promise by amending Article 243 (1).

He said he would be disappointed if Parliament did not amend the Article, explaining that whether the electorate voted “Yes or No” in the referendum, the question of whether MMDCEs would be elected was a decision for Parliament.

Workshop

Dr Osae was speaking on the Constitutional Regulatory processes of the December 17 Referendum and District Assembly Elections at a training workshop for selected journalists at Nyanyano in the Central Region at the weekend.

The workshop was organised by the Ghana Journalists Association to equip journalists with knowledge on the elections, referendum and local government reforms for effective public education.

It formed part of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) media-civil society organisations partnership for inclusive local governance.

Best practice

Dr Osae said, among other things, that the election of MMDCEs would be in resonance with international best practice and promote local democracy by affording local people the opportunity to choose their own leaders to fully democratise the local government system.

He said the election of MMDCEs would guarantee their tenure of office and give the opportunity for competent persons to stand for elections.

On what he called the perceived demerits of electing MMDCEs, the technical advisor said they included the manipulation of MMDCEs by party officials and constituency executives but stressed that the perceived demerits would be resolved with the consequential reviews and amendments to existing laws and policies.

He explained that the need for a change in the mode of appointing MMDCEs had been identified as a governance gap in the country’s local governance system.

The Programmes Manager of the GJA /Star Ghana project, Mr Kojo Mpraim, said the workshop was to create a platform for purposeful collaboration between journalists and Star Ghana in order to promote inclusive governance in the country.