The Concern elected Assembly Members of Ghana has said the delay in the appointment of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) is an affront to the decentralization policy.
They said the absent of MMDCEs has stalled all development issues at the various assemblies to the disadvantage of the assembly members and their electorates.
“We the Concern elected ASSEMBLY MEMBERS of Ghana wish to draw the attention of the president to his unprecedented delay in the nomination of MMDCES.
“According to Article 243(1) of the 1992 constitution and Section 20 (1) of the Local Governance Act, 2016 (Act 936), the nomination of MMDCEs is the sole prerogative of the President,” a statement said.
“For the avoidance of doubt, article 243 provides that “(1) there shall be a District Chief Executive for every district who shall be appointed by the President with the prior approval of not less than two-thirds majority of members of the Assembly present and voting at the meeting. (2) The District Chief Executive shall— (a) preside at meetings of the Executive Committee of the Assembly;
“(b) be responsible for the day-to-day performance of the executive and administrative functions of the District Assembly; and (c) be the chief representative of the Central Government in the district.”
“For the first time in the history of the Fourth Republic, Eight (8) months into this NPP administration, MMDCES are yet to be nominated for election. This is an affront to the decentralization policy. This has stalled all development issues at the various assemblies to the disadvantage of the assembly members and their electorates.
“We wish to by this statement, draw the attention of the President to release the list without any further delay. We have painfully accepted the incompetence of this government in the administration of this country, but to delay in nominating MMDCEs for eight months makes his incompetence, legendary and unacceptable,” the statement signed by Convener, Musah Ziyad, said.
President of the Chamber of Local government, Dr. Richard Fiadomor for his part said it was illegal for President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to ask MMDCEs to act until substantive ones are nominated for confirmation by the assembly members.
He told Johnnie Hughes on the Community Connect on 3FM Friday August 20 that the law does not permit persons to act as MMDCEs.
Mr Fiadomor announced that his organization will seek an interpretation of the Act in the Supreme Court as to whether or not the MMDCEs can serve in an acting capacity.
President Nana Akufo-Addo in a January directive signed by the Chief of Staff Akosua Frema Opare urged the MMDCEs to remain at post but warned them against taking any policy-related decisions.
“You are to take note of the provision of section 14 (5) of the Presidential (Transition) Act (2012) which states that you shall not take a decision involving a policy issue,” the notice said.
Subsequently, the Greater Accra Regional Co-ordinating Council debunked claims that MMDCEs had been directed to leave office and hand over affairs to their Co-ordinating Directors.
A statement from the Co-ordinating Council said “The attention of the Regional Co-ordinating Council has been drawn to a message circulating on social media that “All MMDCEs are to hand over to their respective Co-ordinating Directors by close by Thursday 20th May 2021.”
“I have the directive of the Hon. Regional Minister to inform all MMDCEs in Greater Accra to disregard this message and continue to remain at post as per the presidential directive reference SCR/DA 39/314/01 on 11th January 2021,” the statement further said.
Dr Fiadomor told Johnnie Hughes that “To ask MMDCEs to act is an illegality. There is nowhere in the constitution or in the Act that allows for somebody to be a Chief Executive in an acting role. You must be confirmed by the assembly members so if the assembly members have not confirmed you you cannot act and that is why if today, I am nominated to be the MCE for Tema, I cannot go to the Assembly to do any business there because I need to wait for the assembly members to confirm me.
“So that in itself is illegality, we are putting things together to go the Supreme Court for interpretation so that in future a government comes to power or government succeeds itself it does not ask MMDCEs to act.”
By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana