A new Afrobarometer survey report has revealed that the majority of Ghanaians have endorsed the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) nationwide as part of measures to deepen Ghana’s governance system.
The report, released by the Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) on Tuesday, February 27, this year in Accra, said almost seven in 10 Ghanaians, representing 69 percent, say MMDCE positions should be made elective, including 55 percent who agree very strongly with this view.”
25 percent, according to the report, say they “want to maintain the current system of MMDCEs appointed by the president with approval by the local assembly.”
AfroBarometer Ghana Team, led by CDD-Ghana, using an error margin of +/-2 percent at a 95 percent confidence level, reportedly interviewed a total of 2,400 adult Ghanaians between September 9 and 25, 2017.
The respondents were accordingly drawn from 293 towns in about 171 districts nationwide.
“Strong support for electing MMDCEs is consistent with previous Afrobarometer survey findings (60% in 2008 and 71% in 2012), it said.
According to the report, support for election of MMDCEs “is strong across demographic groups, including supporters of both the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
It is stronger among citizens with higher education (73% secondary and 70% post-secondary) than those with no formal education (59%), the report said.
In Upper West Region, however, 52 percent of citizens preferred appointment of MMDCEs, while only about one-third, representing 36 percent, supported making these positions elective.
51 percent of the respondents said election of MMDCEs should be non-partisan like local government.
The report was released at a time when President Akufo-Addo has reaffirmed his commitment to pass a law that would make MMDCE positions elective in a bid to improve transparency and accountability at the local level.
Deputy Local Government and Rural Development Minister, O.B. Amoah, addressing journalists on the sidelines of the launch of the report, said steps were being taken to push a legislation through parliament that will ensure that a referendum be held in September 2019 during the district level elections on whether or not MMDCEs should be elected on partisan basis.
He indicated that more public sensitization works were required to ensure that members of the public clearly understand the call for electing MMDCEs.
But Executive Director of the Institute of Democratic Governance (IDEG), Dr. Emmanuel Akwatey, in a brief remark during a panel discussion at the launch, said the election of MMDCEs should be on partisan basis.
He called for major constitutional reforms that will ensure that the election of MMDCEs will yield the much-needed developmental and democratic benefits.
Afrobarometer is a pan-African, non-partisan research network that conducts public attitude surveys on democracy, governance, economic conditions and related issues across Africa.
It conducted surveys in Ghana in 1999, 2002, 2005, 2008, 2012 and 2014.
It commenced the conduct of its round seven surveys from 2016 which is expected to end in 2018.
Source: Daily Guide
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