NDC backs election of MMDCEs

President John Mahama says his administration would initiate constitutional changes to have metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs) elected rather than nominated by the President.

That, he said, would be part of measures to enhance decentralisation and accountable governance at the local level.

Giving highlights of the ruling National Democratic Congress’ 2016 Manifesto, at the Banquet Hall in Accra on Tuesday, President Mahama noted that the election of MMDCEs would help to speed up development and make them more accountable to the people.

Regarding the management of the regions, he announced that his administration would consider creating additional five regions by dividing some of the very large regions for easy administration and management.

In that regard, he said a commission of enquiry would be set up to consider recommendations for the creation of new regions, to ensure that the right decisions were taken for that purpose.

President Mahama, who gave the manifesto highlights on plans, policy and initiatives for all the sectors of the economy, particularly education, health, agriculture and the economy, said the manifesto was hinged on the pillars of human resource development, job creation, social infrastructure and accountable governance.

Under education, he said, among the interventions to boost training of the youth, technical and vocational education and training (TVET) would be rebranded and boosted to equip the youth with quality employable and job creation skills.

In addition, he said there would be interventions to effectively link education to industry in order for the schools’ curricula to respond to the needs of industry.

The President said pupils and secondary school students would be offered electronic textbooks in the form of laptops each to enhance education and Information Communication Technology (ICT) learning.

Under health, he noted that the sustainability of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) would be reviewed to secure other sources of funding for the scheme.

Among the funding sources, the President said a per centage of the Annual Budget Funding Amount from the oil revenue would be allocated to the NHIS.

With regard to employment creation, he said the youth would be assisted through the Youth Enterprise Support (YES) with an annual funding of GHc25million, to set up enterprises.

The President said regional development agencies would be created for all the regions without such bodies to spearhead the economic growth of the regions using their comparative advantage.

By Edmund Mingle

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