Editorial

THE ROLE OF THE MEDIA IN THE UPCOMING REFERENDUM ON ELECTION OF MMDCES

In December, Ghana will embark on a journey to elect Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) into office.

Not only that, political parties will be allowed to participate in the district level elections in 2021.

The referendum which will require that Ghanaians vote “Yes or No” will be held on December 17, alongside the district level and unit committee elections.

The referendum is aimed at amending Articles 243 (1) and 55(3) of the 1992 constitution to pave way for election of MMDCEs as well as allow political parties to participate in the district level elections.

Noticeably, at the district level, a lot of campaigning is going on with candidates putting up themselves to be elected in the upcoming elections.

However, the media appears not to be interested at this stage in the novel political exercise that is slated for December.

There have been casual approaches so far to what is going on at the district level.

Perhaps, that is the reason why the Ghana Journalists Association made a call on the media to deploy its power to ensure an overwhelming “Yes” vote for the upcoming referendum.

Addressing senior editors of some select media houses as part of the Enhance Media- Civil Society Organisation (CSO) for Inclusive Local Governance Project in Accra, on Tuesday, the GJA president, Roland Affail Monney, said the media had a responsibility to ensure that the referendum was successful.

“It is part of our constitutional re-engineering and the media as key players must put their shoulders to the wheel and ensure that majority of our people participate in this all important assignment,” he said.

According to the GJA president, the time had come for the media to submerge its individual agenda for the supreme agenda of the nation, stressing that, “let us focus on highlighting this important issue.”

The Ghanaian Times shares in the view of the GJA president and adds its voice to the media fraternity to offer its platform for Ghanaians to fully understand the need for the referendum and participate in it.

It is barely three months away from the date slated for the referendum and not so much media space has been devoted to it.

Although the media’s role is so crucial to the success of the referendum and the district level elections, all other stakeholders, including, the Ministry of Local Government and civil society must partner the media to set the agenda for the public.

The collaboration of the various stakeholders is very important if we were to have successful outcomes for the referendum and the district level elections.

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