Stop Politicizing District-Level Elections – Former DCE Nominee

Politics District Level Elections
District Level Elections

Mr Goodman Paul Agbesi Ayrah, a former District Chief Executive (DCE) nominee for Akatsi North, has decried the rate at which party politics was creeping into the District Level elections.

He said care must be taken “not to create unamenable cracks within the core of the fiber of our society which will be beyond repairs.”

Mr Ayrah, a former assembly member and a human rights activist, made the call in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) ahead of the upcoming December 19 exercise.

“It is worrying as one can observe glaringly, the frantic efforts being made by some political parties in getting their members or sympathisers elected.”

He indicated that it was not for nothing that the constitution abhorred the politicisation of the local-level elections.

“The District Assembly concept is the most basic core and fundamental structure of our democratic architecture, and so it must be kept politically neutral as the framers of the 1992 posit to attract the necessary community cohesion and local development to take place,” he said.

Mr Ayrah argued that the canker remained a common knowledge that some, “if not all political players, such as MPs and party executives, sponsor these aspirants during their contest.”

“Of late, many aspirants even design their campaign flyers and posters using their party colours to influence other party members to vote for them.”

The act, he said, is gradually creating a state of lawlessness and self-will with no respect for the Constitution.

“Even now, some politicians have started organising intra-party primaries for aspirants deemed to belong to the same political party to get one formidable candidate to contest the supposed opposition candidate in blatant disregard for Local Governance Act 2016, as amended Act 936, section 8 clause 1, 2, 3 and 4.”

Mr Ayrah further attributed the practice to the view that political parties intentionally engage in the move to hold majority support to influence decisions on sensitive matters in the assembly, such as wielding the power to confirm or reject DCE nominees, and others.

“It is constructive and useful to speak against the phenomenon if we love our democracy to grow to benefit all of us.”

He, therefore, called on Corporate Social Organisations (CSOs), NGOs, Democratic Institutions, the Media, religious bodies, and individuals to rise to speak against the act.

“Let us allow the Constitution to function. We cannot pretend all is well. Competence of a candidate must be the choice over political sycophancy,” he added.

Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the various Metropolises, Municipalities, and Districts would go to the polls to elect Assembly and Unit Committee Members on December 19 this year in fulfilment of the 1992 constitution.

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