Ghanaian voters have tagged education, employment, and health as topmost issues to influence the Presidential and Parliamentary Candidate to vote for on December 7, a survey conducted by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) stated.
Other issues classified as matters of concern to the Ghanaian voter include; Women and Children’s needs; Youth Development; Corruption; Social Service such as sanitation, provision of KVIP, and water supply.
The rest are Agriculture, Economy, Sports, Roads and Infrastructure, Information Communications and Technology (ICT), Environmental and Climate change, and Social Intervention policies.
Other emerged issues were the rule of law, peaceful co-existence, and patriotism; the NCCE survey made available to the Ghana News Agency was tagged: “Election 2020 - matters of concern to the Ghanaian voter”.
The survey was conducted in all the 275 Constituencies and information gathered from 9,541 Ghanaians. The data was collected in September 2020.
According to the NCCE survey, one-third of the respondents stressed the need for the next government to continue with the Free Education Policy in addition to providing more infrastructure to accommodate students.
On Employment, majority of the respondent highlighted the creation of more job opportunities by building more factories; the next Government must also provide adequate health infrastructure and improve the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
Respondents want Parliamentarians to enact laws to extend the Free Education Policy to all levels of education; enact laws to support the creation of more jobs; lobby the executive for adequate provision of health infrastructure, and make laws that address challenges of the NHIS.
The NCCE survey also established that the Ghanaian Voter Parliamentarians to use their allocated Common Fund in relation to the critical issues.
“For instance, on the three topmost issues of concern, over 30.0 percent indicated that Parliamentarians should use their share of the Common Fund to provide scholarship, educational facilities, materials and items respectively.
“In relation to Employment, 31.5 percent of the respondents proposed the provision of credit facilities for small businesses and groups, while more than a quarter, suggested the building of factories in the constituency and the sponsoring of training programmes in skills acquisition for constituents”.
The respondents also advocated the provision of health infrastructure in the constituency through the use of Parliamentarians' share of the Common Fund under Health as one of the three topmost issues of concern.
Ms Josephine Nkrumah, NCCE Chairperson in an interview with the Ghana News Agency said the Commission was established to among others to, “assess for the information of government, the limitation to the achievement of true democracy arising from existing inequalities between different strata of the population and make recommendations for addressing these inequalities.”
She said the overall objective the 2020 Survey was to investigate on matters that were of concern to the Ghanaian voter as well as their perceptions on the performances of previous governments in addressing key developmental issues in the December polls.
Ms Nkrumah said the study sought to explore the willingness of Ghanaians to cast their vote; ascertain what electorates demand of their political representatives, and to assess government (past and present) performance in addressing topmost developmental concerns in past matters of concern studies.
The NCCE Chairperson explained that the survey also uncovered emerging violent trends and citizens’ knowledge of the use of arms and its contribution to electoral violence in Ghana.
She said the survey also provided the NCCE with adequate information for developing content for its civic/voter education on the 2020 general elections and beyond.
Ms Nkrumah said the commission also generated empirical data for assessing and tracking government interventions and policies to determine whether they are responsive to the matters articulated as concerns to voters.