Over 66,000 people to run for District Level Elections across the country

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Ghanaian Voters
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About 66, 200 persons will be contesting positions in the upcoming District Level Elections across the country.

The Electoral Commission (EC) has scheduled Tuesday, December 19, 2023, for the local government electionsin in all districts across the country, except the Nkoranza North and Nkoranza South in the Bono East Region.

Voters will elect assembly members and unit committee members for the next four years.

According to data obtained from the EC, the elections will be held in 6,215 electoral areas.

Out of the about 66, 200 contestants, about 18,750 are contesting Assembly Member positions whiles about 47,500 are seeking to become unit committee members.

Regional breakdown
The Ashanti Region holds the highest number of candidates, with a total of 3,794 contestants vying for the Assembly member position, whiles 9,314 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Greater Accra Region, 1,340 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 4,607 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

The figure reduces drastically in the Savannah Region, where 397 persons are contesting the Assembly Election, with 860 persons vying for unit committee membership.

In the Oti Region, 628 persons are contesting the Assembly Election while 1,236 are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Western Region, 11,197 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 3,599 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Central Region, 1,634 persons are contesting the Assembly Election while 4,440 are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

Meanwhile in the Eastern Region, 1340 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 4,607 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Western North, 575 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 1,718 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Bono Region, 877 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 2123 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Bono East Region, 664 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 1,902 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Northern Region, 1,074 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 2028 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Upper West Region, 730 persons are contesting the Assembly Election while 1897 are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the North East Region, 373 candidates are contesting Assembly Elections while 648 candidates are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

In the Upper East Region, 939 persons are contesting the Assembly Election while 1,946 are contesting the Unit Committee Election.

Low turnout
Concerns have been raised about the low voter turnout in District Level Elections in decades as compared to General Election.

Whiles the national voter turnout for District Level Elections stood below 40 per cent since 1988, voter turnout for General Election, which involved presidential and parliamentary candidates and partisan, averaged 70 per cent since 1992.

Some experts have proposed the participation of political parties in the District Level Elections to help mobilise resources and whip up public interest.

The Constitution currently bars political parties from participating in elections at the local level.

Article 55(3) of the 1992 Constitution, which is an entrenched clause, prohibits the inclusion of party politics in local governance.

A planned referendum to amend that portion of the Constitution was aborted in 2019 due to the lack of consensus among key stakeholders on the involvement of political parties in elections at the local level.

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