The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has stated that electing Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) is an effective accountability and transparency structure to enhance decentralisation.
Madam Catherine Addy, a Deputy National Chairperson of the Commission who said this, indicated that the move would significantly consolidate Ghana’s democratic gains as a beacon of peace and development.
She was speaking at the Central Regional launch of the 2019 District Level Elections (DLEs) and Referendum sensitisation campaign in Cape Coast on Tuesday.
The event was attended by a cross section of the public including market women, beauticians and hairdressers, as well as representatives from the various political parties, civil society organizations and religious bodies.
The referendum, slated for Tuesday December 17, 2019 is expected to give room for the amendments of the 1992 constitution to enable Ghanaians elect MMDCEs into office on political party basis through universal adult suffrage.
The NCCE is thus, using strategies including; regional level lectures, community durbars, stakeholder meetings, focus group discussions, film shows, and sensitisation and awareness programmes in schools and lorry stations to educate people on the exercise.
Madam Addy pointed out that electing the MMDCEs will ease the heavy burden on the presidency in addressing grievances from the grassroots as such people will deal directly their MMDCEs to have their problems resolved.
Local governance system, she said, was about development, hence the need for the people to play important roles in deciding who could work better to steer their progress.
She called on Parliament to amend Article 243 (1) of the Constitution, which called for approval from two-thirds of them to enable the Electoral Commission (EC) to conduct the polls for the election of the MMDCEs.
Madam Addy called on all, particularly; the media, traditional and religious leaders to support the process, especially with regard to educating the citizenry about the initiative and its importance to good democratic governance.
Mr Nicholas Nicholas Ofori Boateng, the Regional Director of the NCCE, rallied the support of the citizenry to vote ‘YES’ to return political and administration power to the grassroots.
He said: “The Commission and its affiliates would be knocking on the doors of religious organizations, and institutions to disseminate information on the DLEs and the Referendum.
“I therefore, call on all who matter to give the Commission the needed maximum support and cooperation to enable us perform our constitutional mandate.”
Mr Kwamena Duncan, Regional Minister who launched the campaign, said the election of MMDCEs would reduce the much talked about excessive powers of the President to appoint MMDCEs.
He re-echoed calls for all to be actively involved in the exercise to make it a success.
Representatives of political parties, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), National Peace Council (NPC), Christian Council and the Electoral Commission took turns to address the public.