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Politics of Monday, 6 May 2013

Source: todaygh

The people must elect DCEs – Nduom urges

Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, has re-inforced his call for Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) to be directly elected by the people.

He has, therefore, urged the president to ‘wash his hands off’ the election of MMDCEs in the country.

Dr. Nduom made this observation when he hosted Ghana, Great and Strong, a weekend programme that critically examines issues of national interest on Internet-based wwwhedjorleonlineradio in Accra last Saturday.

According to him, he has initiated a petition drive to get signatures to support the election of MMDCEs. The petition when completed will be presented to the President, Parliament and the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) and very soon will be presenting it to them.

Ghanaians, he said, are “ready and intelligent enough” to elect their MMDCEs and must, therefore, be given that chance.

He also called on Ghanaians who support his call for MMDCEs to be elected to rally behind him in signing his petition to ensure accelerated local development “based on local priorities.” Dr. Nduom wants this petition drive to be non-partisan in nature and is calling on all Ghanaians, business men and women, religious leaders, students and politicians of all types to support this worthy cause.

“As a result, they listen to Accra and NOT the people they are put there to serve. We must unleash the power of the people to ensure that when their Chief Executives do not deliver, they remove them at the next election. This way, we can experience accelerated local development based on local priorities not somebody in Accra’s politically motivated interests,” he indicated.

Against this backdrop, Dr. Nduom urged Ghanaians to reject the government’s White Paper on the report of the Constitution Review Commission of Inquiry which spelt out the following…“that the President nominates a minimum of five persons who would be vetted by the Public Services Commission for competence after which three nominees would contest in a public election.

“…I want to assert that the [Mahama] Government White Paper Report that suggested that the President nominates a minimum of 5 persons who would be vetted by the Public Services Commission for competence after which 3 nominees would contest in a public election is not a good thing.

On the programme were Nana Boadi, a businessman, and Charles Owusu, a member of the PPP Communication Team.

Nana Boadi commended Dr. Nduom for his efforts to ensure that MMDCEs are popularly elected.

He could not understand why Assembly members are elected to bring about development at the Assemblies, but when it comes to the MMDCEs the president should have a hand in their selection.

“It is not right for the president to select some persons to be considered for the position of MMDCE,” he affirmed.

In his opinion, the president is just an ‘administrative person’ and must, therefore, not make laws and policies that will not benefit and bring development to the masses of this country.

Nana Boadi, therefore, appealed to President Mahama not to meddle in the election of MMDCEs.

For his part, Mr. Charles Owusu supported the view that MMDCEs should be elected by the people in their various localities.

That, he stressed, will ensure transparency, accountability and bring about development at the local level.

“When our MMDCEs are popularly elected, it will offer people the opportunity to work closely with them [the MMDCEs] to bring about development in their localities,” Mr. Owusu submitted.

Earlier on the programme, the panelists examined ways of improving the conditions of service of Assembly members.

The Assembly member for Wa Municipality, Hon. James Sohimwinye, who spoke via phone, described as “woeful” the social conditions of his colleagues.

According to him, while the President and MPs who are elected by the people receive fat salaries what Assembly members receive is only a pittance.

The two agreed that it is high time conditions of service of Assembly members in the country were improved to enable them work hard to improve the lot of their people.