The Convention Peoples Party (CPP) have called on all well meaning Ghanaians to support the amendment of Article 55 (3) with a YES vote in the December 17, 2019 referendum. According to the CPP it is only this brave and definitive reform of decentralization in Ghana that can free the country from the current political opportunism and inertia associated with the practice.
In a statement released by its Acting General Secretary, James Kwabena Bomfeh Jnr, it stated that a stand with Yes in the upcoming referendum is a stand with ‘fearless honesty’.
On December 17, 2019, Ghanaians will go to the polls to vote for the amendment of Article 55 (3) of the 1992 constitution. The vote will decide whether the anticipated election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) will be done on partisan basis or not. Currently, Parliament is considering the amendment of article 243 (1) of the 1992 constitution for the election of the MMDCEs.
According to Mr. Bomfeh, there was unanimity on September 18, 2019 among the three major political parties in Ghana, Convention People’s Party, CPP; New Patriotic Party and National Democratic Congress at a forum organized by the National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) following the adoption of manifesto pledges to elect MMDCEs by the major contenders in the 2016 general elections.
He has therefore expressed shock at a strange argument that is emerging against the amendment and a campaign for No votes. He described the argument raised by people who are against the Yes votes as “not only strange… it is incurably flawed and ungrounded”.
He stated that inherent in elections is partisanship and therefore “cannot be right that one supports the election of MMDCEs but deprecates or abhors the same along party lines.”
The Prof. Fiadjoe Constitutional Review Commission (CRC), observed in their report that despite the claim of nonpartisanship in the district and local level elections, the practice is true in the opposite.
The commission further observed that “political parties being the main actors in ensuring popular participation of their following especially during elections will, in a partisan local government system, contribute to the development of our local governance system by directing attention, energies and resources towards politics that will ensure the provision of essential services for the accelerated development of our localities.”
Mr. Bomfeh therefore commended the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, for the bold step he has taking in ensuring that the election of MMDCEs become a reality.
He further urged the president to lead in revisiting the subject of overhauling the entire 1992 Constitution to make the necessary amendments that will complete the journey from a convenient political document to a development engendered Constitution ensuring Accountability, Transparency, clear and unambiguous Separation of Powers in which the free will and aspirations of the people can be realized.