Governance expert Dr. Eric Oduro Osae says the research conducted by some faculty members of the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana has exposed the lack of sensitization and understanding on governance issues amongst citizens.
According to him, findings from the research indicate that a lot of Ghanaians are not abreast with functions of Members of Parliament.
The research, which was conducted by the faculty members with support from the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, shows 49.5% of the respondents say they will not vote to retain their MPs.
They attributed this to the failure on the part of MPs to visit their constituencies regularly and also embark on developmental projects.
Although the key function of MPs is to make laws, most of the respondents seem to place more importance on getting their MPs champion developmental projects.
Following the publication of findings of the research, a lot of MPs have come out to challenge the results, faulting the researchers for focusing on developments instead of emphasising the MPs’ main role of making laws.
It is on the back of this that Dr. Oduro Osae says the focus of the research as well as response from the respondents shows a lot of people do not know what the exact functions of MPs are.
‘NCCE must be resourced’
Speaking on TV3‘s The Key Points show on Saturday, June 15, Dr. Oduro Osae said the lack of understanding on the issue is due to the lack of education amongst the citizenry on governance issues.
“I think we have to blame ourselves as a society, because we have not educated people enough, we have not sensitized people enough.
“For me, I think it will be unfair if we are not able to come out clearly on what the exact functions of the MPs are before we draw a conclusion,” Dr. Oduro Osae stated.
According to him, the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) ought to be resourced to embark on a massive sensitization exercise across the country.
“I think we have a lot of work to do as a nation. I like this report, but I think it opens a window of opportunity for NCCE and all of us to educate people on the the exact function of MPs.
“If you go through the report, majority, as many as 50.8% said they advocate for development, but from our governance architecture they have to lobby for it,” he explained.
Dr. Oduro Osae underscored the need for people to be educated, and be made to understand the functions of the various actors in the governance chain.
By Irene Amesimeku| 3news.com|Ghana