Don: Legal regime needed for political party sponsorship

A political science lecturer at the University of Ghana, Dr Kwame Asah-Asante, has backed a former government appointee on the need for a legal regime change on political party sponsorships by private persons and institutions.


He explained that existing state-led efforts to fight corruption would yield no tangible results unless there was a legislation to check and regulate activities of political party financiers.


“One of the things that go into high-level corruption is the issue of party financing where we allow people to fund the party against the rules we have set for ourselves, the comment by the former government appointee, Afriyie Ankrah is not only important to advance the fight against systemic corruption, but it is also a confession about an issue that has always been deliberately hushed in anti-graft discourses.


“What Afriyie Ankrah said is the reality on the ground and there’s the need for a state-led paradigm shift which must come out clearly to define how parties can be funded, political party sponsors must have workable programme that will ensure we fund parties.


“When we fund them well, the public will have access to those who fund the parties, how much they contributed and where those people will work, at the end of the day when we see them chasing some contracts, we know where they are coming from.


“A first step will be to begin tracking and regulating donations to political parties, if they go beyond certain threshold it will not be allowed, a second step will be to empower political parties to educate their members and the electorate on their right to demand accountability from elected officials, whether they presented them with gifts during campaigns or not.


“The National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) should intensify the campaign to educate electorate they must not be influenced by money or other gifts from politicians in deciding who to vote.


Speaking at a conference on ‘Rethinking Political Leadership in Ghana’, a former Minister of Youth and Sports and Local Government and Rural Development, Afriyie Ankrah, called for a legislation that would limit private persons and institutions sponsoring electoral campaigns of political parties.


According to him, his experience in government left him without doubt state officials sometimes intentionally pass questionable deals as payback for individuals and institutions who helped a ruling party during electioneering campaigns. –

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