A survey conducted by the Centre for Democratic Development-Ghana (CDD-Ghana) on citizens’ preference for the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) has revealed that 71per cent of the citizenry, who wanted Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) elected, preferred a non-partisan election.
However, 20 per cent opted for a partisan election showed that citizens’ preference for a non-partisan-based election of MMDCEs increased by 12 per cent but preference for a partisan-based format declined by 20 per cent between 2017 and 2021.
The survey, which was carried out from May to June 2021 found that 76 per cent of the sampled population would like MMDCEs to be elected while 20 per cent supported their appointment.
In 2019, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo began processes to carry out referendum on election of MMDCEs on partisan basis, which was cancelled at the eleventh hour due to lack of consensus however, the findings were contrary to his proposal to have election of MMDCEs on partisan basis.
Findings from the survey were presented at the opening of a two-day consultative forum in Tamale jointly organised and funded by the Ghana Developing Communities Association (GDCA) and the Northern Sector Action on Awareness Centre (NORSAAC) in partnership with CDD-Ghana deliberated on findings of the research and the way forward.
Dubbed: ‘The Election of MMDCEs and Complimentary Reforms-Opportunities for Transforming Local Governance in Ghana’, there were other presentations on ‘Building Consensus on Local Government Reforms’ and The State of Local Administrative Structures’, a total of 2,400 Ghanaians were randomly sampled for the survey with samples distributed across regions, urban and rural areas proportional to their share in national adult population and interviewed face-to-face.
Paul Kuffour, Programmes Manager at CDD-Ghana, who presented the research findings, said the Centre conducted the survey objectively to confirm citizens’ thought on conversations surrounding local government reforms.
He explained that the findings of the study were disaggregated to check whether they were in tandem with demographics such as gender, political parties, age among others to ensure results were not representation of section of demographics.
“The coalition held multi-stakeholder meetings at regional and national levels to complement development efforts, since local governance reforms may not be panacea as our local governance system is dysfunctional and memos and proposals are being put together taking into consideration advantages and disadvantages associated with electing MMDCEs on either partisan or non-partisan basis,” Mr Kuffour pointed out.
Professor Yakubu Nantogmah, Chief of Zugu, observed that it was essential to work towards achieving a national goal through partnerships amidst honesty and equity must be applied at all decision-making levels giving equal opportunities to women.