Local government system should remain non-partisan

By
Laudia Sawer, GNA

Tema, Nov. 8, GNA –
The Chamber for Local Governance (ChaLoG) on Friday called on Ghanaians to vote
No in the upcoming Referendum to ensure that the local government system
remained non-partisan.

ChaLoG explained
that voting Yes would politicised the local governance system against the
entrenched clause Article 55(3) of the 1992 Constitution.

The clause state
that: “Subject to the provisions of this Article, a political party is free to
participate in shaping the political will of the people, to disseminate
information on political ideas, social and economic programmes of a national
character, and sponsor candidates for elections to any public office other than
to District Assemblies or lower local government units”.

ChaLoG in a
statement collectively signed by Dr Richard Fiadomor, President; Mr Romeo
Akahoho, Executive Secretary; Alhaji Ibrahim F. Faila, Public Relations
Officer; and Mr Joshua Quist, Special Duties and made available to the Ghana
News Agency at Tema stated.

They noted that
Ghana was not ready for introduction of fully blown partisan politics at the
local government level adding that a Yes vote would have dire consequences
including; increase in corruption.

“The consequence of
the proposed amendment, will lead to massive corruption in our various MMDAs as
most MMDCEs are most likely to misappropriate the financial resources of the
Assemblies.

“To obviously defray
the expenses incurred in having to go through the various processes if
political parties are involved as opposed to the only one stage of soliciting
votes directly from the electorate devoid of the payment of filing fees,” the
statement stated.

According to
statement, the amendment would also lead to the politicization of development
project as they said they have heard severally that appointed MMDCEs
deliberately delayed the release of the MPs share of the District Common Fund
to Members of Parliament belonging to the opposition party.

They stated that
against this background, GhaLoG foresee massive politicization of basic
development project within districts and electoral areas across the country as
they believed MMDCEs would most likely favour Assembly Members who belonged to
their political parties in the allocation of financial resources.

“These actions will
be undertaken ostensibly to consolidate the gains for their political party and
deprive their political opponents of development projects with the view to
annex those electoral areas for their political party in the next District
Level Elections,” the statement stated.

ChaLoG also
indicated that they foresee a conflict between Assembly Members and Unit
Committee Members as Unit Committee belonging to the ruling party would
undermine the authority of the opposition Assembly Members.

“A Yes vote for the
amendment,” they said would lead to a dip in revenue mobilisation of the
Assemblies as any action taken against a business or property owner would be
deemed to be an attack on them especially if they belonged to the opposition.

Other consequences
they mentioned were power play between opposition Chief Executive Officer and
Coordinating Director and political interference in the work of MMDCEs and
power play between them and MPs.

ChaLoG questioned
which party’s manifesto an opposition MMDCE’s are required to implement.

ChaLoG therefore
called on Ghanaians to turn up in their numbers on Tuesday December 17, 2019 to
reject the proposal to amend Article 55(3) by voting NO (Dark Brown Colour) to
keep Ghana’s local government system non-partisan for a total and holistic
development in the various MMDAs devoid of partisan politics.

GNA

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