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Government committed to MMDCEs elections - Minister

Halima Meeting Hajia Alima (seated 4th from left) in a photograph with the participants

Mon, 30 Apr 2018 Source:

Minister for Local Government & Rural Development, Hajia Alima Mahama, has stressed that government is committed to the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) on partisan basis.

She mentioned that MMDCEs have been nominated by the president, approved by two/thirds majority votes of the assembly and government appointees supposedly on non-partisan basis over the years.

The Minister disclosed that the Constitution Review Commission’s report on the 1992 Constitution states that “since the introduction of the 1992 Constitution, there had been incessant calls for a change in the manner of appointing MMDCEs which in the opinion of many is undemocratic.”

According to her, it was argued that it was undemocratic to superimpose a national government structure that is contested on political party lines over a local government system that is non-partisan.

“Today, the need for a change in the mode of appointing MMDCEs has been identified as a governance gap in our local governance system,” she added.

Hajia Mahama pointed out that to meet the democratic deficit, the current government promised to elect MMDCEs on partisan basis during the 2016 electioneering campaign.

She indicated that the government of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has deemed it fit to revise the constitutional, legal, policy and institutional changes to ensure that MMDCE were elected on partisan lines.

“A process has been initiated to bring about the necessary constitutional, legal, policy and institutional changes to ensure that MMDCEs are elected on partisan basis,” she added.

Hajia Mahama was speaking at a sensitisation and awareness workshop on the election of MMDCEs in Ghana in Takoradi.

In attendance were Municipal and District Chief Executives, Municipal and District Coordinating Directors, representatives of political parties, chiefs and queens, representatives of civil society organisations, identifiable groups and the media.

She indicated that the proposal to elect MMDCEs is an inevitable intervention critically needed to deepen the democratic process of the country.

The Minister highlighted that the move is in line with contemporary global best practice in local governance.

She stated that President Dankwa Akufo-Addo had pointed out on many occasions that the constitutional impediment which is an entrenched clause must be removed to pave the way for a referendum for a national consensus on the matter.

Hajia Mahama, therefore, appealed to all participants in the consultative meeting to deliberate on the issue dispassionately irrespective of their alignment with any political party or any other interest group.

“This is to help build a favourable consensus towards the achievement of the desired goal to promote local democracy and to select a leader who would be more responsive and directly accountable to the people,” she added.

In a welcome address, the Deputy Western Regional Minister, Gifty Eugenia Kusi, reiterated that the president is committed to the process and called on all stakeholders to support his cause.

“The president’s State of the Nation Address to Parliament in February 2018 re-echoed the commitment of government towards the election of MMDCEs on a partisan basis,” she indicated.

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