Give assemblies full authority to make decentralisation functional – Dr. Nduom

Founder of the Progressive People’s Party, Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, has advocated a change of some constitutional provisions that he considers to be hindering the functionality of the country’s decentralisation process.

He observed that failure of the central government to give the local government authorities control over their budgets, as well as the appointment of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives by the president have affected developments.

In a Facebook post Wednesday night, Dr. Nduom further underscored the need to eliminate laws that gives the president the power to appoint one-third of assembly members in the various local assemblies.

“We must all work together to ensure complete decentralization of administration and democracy,” he urged.

Dr. Nduom noted that since the 1980s, the way of doing things have changed hence “we must change along with it and trust the local people to determine their own destiny”.

In recent times, a lot of people have advocated the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives for the respective assemblies across the country.

Flagbearer of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo-Addo, former National Security Coordinator, Col. Larry Gbevlo-Lartey (rtd), former Finance Minister Osafo Marfo, and media practitioner Kwesi Pratt Jnr have all supported calls for MMDCEs to be elected for various reasons.

Although President Mahama in 2013 declared his support for the election of the chief executives of the various assemblies, he said if care was not taken, the process would be politicised and consequently defeat the purpose for which the local governance system

However, Prof.Kwamena Ahwoi, a local government expert, has downplayed calls for the heads of the local assemblies arguing it will further deepen disunity at the grassroots and be detrimental to the development of the country.

I agree with Mr. Pratt that it is time we change the 1992 Constitution to give power to the people to elect their own District, Municipal and Metropolitan Chief Executives, eliminate the appointment of one-third of Assembly Members by the President and give the local governments complete control over their budgets.

Our Ghanaian world has moved on from the 1980s and we must change along with it and trust the local people to determine their own destiny. This has been one of my crusades for years and it is good that broad consensus is building for the change we need to happen.

By Stephen Kwabena Effah|3news.com|Ghana

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