Create Commission to regulate political parties — IDEG

The Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), has reiterated its call for the establishment of Multi-Party Democracy Commission (MDC) to strengthen and consolidate the country’s democratic gains.

The MDC, according to Dr Kwesi Jonah, a Senior Research Fellow at IDEG would regulate the activities of the various political parties in the country.

He noted that “they would also be tasked to look into the financial standings and how political parties raise funds for their activities, especially during the electioneering period”.

Dr Jonah made the call during a stakeholders’ consultation meeting on transformational local governance reform and constitutional amendment in Sunyani.

It was organised by IDEG and attended by civil society organisations, security services, traditional rulers, the clergy and representatives of some political parties.

Dr Jonah noted that the activities of political parties were polarised as it was always difficult to control them.

That, Dr. Jonah explained was a contributory factor to the recurring threats of violence in Ghana’s presidential and parliamentary elections.

He indicated that the establishment of the Commission would improve on regulating activities of political parties by enacting laws to govern the electoral process and bring sanity into the electoral discourse as well.

He observed that “the recurring threats of violence were partly as a result of a systematic problem, where Article 55 (3) of the 1992 constitution excluded political parties from contesting in local government elections.
Dr Jonah expressed dismay that the main focus of political parties in the country was to go for, and win the general election, sidelining their developmental roles in nation-building.

He said MDC would ensure that political parties factored the priority needs of the citizenry that would spur rapid socio-economic growth and development.

“We must endeavour to streamline the activities of all political parties by ensuring that the political parties adhered to basic regulations during, before and after the electioneering,” he stressed.

Mr Kofi Awity, the Director of Operations at IDEG, re-emphasised the importance on the need to elect Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) instead of their appointment.

He said a constitutional amendment was required so that all political parties would elect a candidate to contest for that position.

Mr Awity called on other civil society organisations to help build and deepen the national campaign for the election of MMDCEs.

Nana Kwaku Sabeng II, the Akwamuhene of Sunyani traditional area, who presided over the programme. asked political parties to allow national interest to supersede their political ambitions. -GNA

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