Compromise among citizenry, political parties needed for MMDCEs election – Lecturer

A Constitutional Law lecturer at the Central University, Susanna Afutu, has suggested a compromise among the citizenry and political parties to pave the way for the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs).

She noted that sharp disagreements between citizens and political parties on whether to elect MMDCEs on political party lines or not must be discussed dispassionately to come to a consensus.

“It is time review of the 1992 Constitution is given consideration since there has been considerable changes after the Constitution Review Committee presented its report, and the government Whitepaper was published,” Mrs Afutu indicated and cited the number of regions which was recently increased from 10 to 16.

She made the suggestion at a roundtable discussion organised by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) to solicit inputs from civil society organisations and other stakeholders into policy document to trigger action as well as reignite discussions on review of the Constitution was held on the theme: “Three decades of uninterrupted Constitutional Rule- Revisiting the agenda of reforms”.

Between 2018 and 2019 there was a pursued amendment of Article 55(3) to enable multiparty participation at the Assemblies and Article 243(1) for the election of MMDCEs, as part of efforts to reform the local governance system and devolve more power and resources to the communities.

However, a planned national referendum scheduled for December 17, 2019 was cancelled for lack of adequate public knowledge and broad-based consensus on the reforms it will entail.

Mrs Afutu admitted that there had been some landmark Supreme Court decisions that had paved the way for some of the recommendations in the CRC to be materialised however, proposed a minimalist approach to the review rather than a total overhaul of the Constitution.

Dr Justice Srem-Sai, a Senior Lecturer at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), urged Ghanaians to find a common ground to pave the way for elections of MMDCEs because politicians hada different view that it should be partisan.

Kathleen Addy, chairperson of NCCE, revealed that the Commission had undertaken series of public events to collate ideas and recommendations to put the documents together and present it to Parliament, the public and the presidency to trigger action from one of the bodies.

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