The Upper West Regional Minister, Dr. Hafiz Bin Salih says although, Ghana has been on the path of decentralization for more than three decades and has deepened decentralization, more needs to be done, because it is an evolving process.
He intimated that enhancing local governance serves as a vehicle to develop through the bottom-up-approach.
Dr. Bin Salih made the observation at the Upper West Regional launch of Public Sensitization and Awareness Raising Campaign on the District Level Elections (DLEs) and Referendum for the Amendment of Article 55(3) of Ghana’s Constitution in Wa.
Dr. Bin Salih indicated that collective action engenders ownership and commitment to change at the local level.
He commented on trend analysis of voter turnout during District Level elections: A trend analysis of voter turnout during District Level elections is below 40 % which is not encouraging.
“So for the amendment of Article 55 (3) of the Constitution to be successful, we need more voters to turnout for the referendum and elections December 17, 2019.”
It is in light of the trend analysis that the NCCE has initiated the awareness program to educate the public on the importance of coming out to vote and why they should vote YES for the amendment. The Minister observed.
The Deputy Chairman of the National Commission for Education (NCCE), Samuel Akuamoah made some clarifications about the confusion relating to the December 17 2019, voting.
“On December 17, 2019, when we go to vote, we are not going to elect MMDCEs, when we go to vote, we are also not going to vote on partisan basis, we are going to vote on non-partisan basis, come December 17. Please let us take note, and the referendum, when the electoral commission puts the question, I am sure they are preparing for that, whether YES or NO, the matter is about Article 55(3) and in the Constitution, Article 55(3) as has been quoted severally this morning, doesn’t talk about election of MMDCEs, it talks about the non involvement of or non-participation of political parties at the District Assembly and lower structures level. So the referendum is to change that or to retain the status quo.” Mr. Akuamoah explained.
Representatives from the Information Services Department, (ISD), Electoral Commission, (EC), National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana, (NALAG) and Political Parties shared their perspectives at the event.
The Upper West Regional Director of the NCCE, Patience Sally Kumah stated that the program among others was to encourage people to turn out massively to in December exercise their franchise.
The Sunche Naa, Naa Osman Daudi who chaired the event appealed to the participants to further raised awareness by talking to the people around them for a successful exercise come December 17, 2019.
Story by Emmanuel Mensah-Abludo