Election of MMDCEs will deepen country’s democracy — Hajia Alima Mahama

Hajia Alima Mahama (second left) interacting with some of the participants

Hajia Alima Mahama (second left) interacting with some of the participants

The election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) will deepen the country’s democracy, the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Hajia Alima Mahama has stated.

She said Ghana’s democracy had witnessed significant progress at the national level and the “only deficit is the absence of a system to popularly elect MMDCEs on the Universal Adult Suffrage.”

Hajia Mahama said this at a sensitisation meeting with professional bodies including local government workers, teacher groups, accountants and marketers, among others, in Accra yesterday.

The minister said the appointment of MMDCEs had not addressed the desired need of the citizenry hence the agitation for the election of the chief executives of the assemblies.

Hajia Mahama said the designed roadmap would be implemented in four phases including the pre-referendum stage, outstanding pre-referendum activities, status of pre-referendum activities and the post referendum activities on annual basis running from 2017-2021.

She explained that the roadmap to the referendum had recommended that organisations and stakeholders were effectively sensitised and prepared for the necessary constitutional, legal and policy review and urged for the support of the amendment of article 55 (3) which prohibited political parties from participating.

The minister said the outcome of the meeting would solicit inputs from stakeholders to enlighten the people on a ‘yes’ vote on the upcoming referendum to amend article 55 (3), leading to the maiden election in June 2021.

She added that the draft bill which had been approved by cabinet, had been presented to the Speaker of Parliament and forwarded to the Council of State for advice as required by the constitution.

Touching on the financing of the referendum, Hajia Mahama explained that since the election of the MMDCES was a priority to the government, funds had already been allocated for it.

Responding to whether women and Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) would be included in the process, she assured participants that nobody would be excluded from the process, adding that it was important to pass the Affirmative Action Bill.

The minister said the role of the professional bodies was crucial before and after the elections as more people would be educated to participate.

BY ALLIA NOSHIE

 

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