Appointed MMDCEs not accountable to citizenry – Baisie Nkum

Baisie Nkum, the President of the National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana (NALAG), has stated that electing Metropolitan, Municipal and Districts Chief Executives (MMDCEs) will make them become autonomous and can expand their scope.

According to him, “If MMDCEs are elected on party basis, it will keep political parties on their toes and eradicate the winner-takes-all syndrome and appointed MMDCEs only become representatives of the central government and not the people at the grassroots level.

“All MMDCES in the country are now promoting Planting for Food and Jobs and Free SHS [Senior High School] because at the national level that is what the president wants to do and the president is the one who appointed them.

“I am basically executing the agenda of the president because I have been appointed by the president. Sierra Leone imitated the practice of our decentralisation system but has extended it to electing of MMDCEs on political basis.

“Change is difficult, I admit but this is what is happening across the globe and even those who are junior to us are even going further to decentralise their governance on a partisan basis.

“Local problems and challenges do not become a matter of urgency because they are aggregated to national issues, I appeal to the citizenry to vote “yes” to promote growth and development in local settings,” Mr Nkum intimated.

A nationwide referendum will be conducted on Tuesday, December 17, 2019, to enable the citizenry to decide if an entrenched clause in the 1992 Constitution of Article 55(3) needs to be amended to permit political parties to participate in local government election.

A voter turnout of at least 40 per cent and 75 per cent yes votes is required to affirm the government’s desire to amend Article 55(3) of the 1992 Constitution while the government and some civil society organisations are campaigning for a ‘yes’ vote, there have been calls by groups and individuals including the National House of Chiefs and the National Democratic Congress, who are canvassing for a no vote. -myjoyonline.com

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