The Upper East Regional office of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has launched the Citizens Education and Awareness Campaign on the upcoming District Level Elections (DLEs) and Referendum in Bolgatanga.
The NCCE Regional Director, Mr. P. P. Apaabey Baba in his opening remarks said the Regional Office in partnership with the Information Service Department (ISD) and the Electoral Commission (EC) is to sensitise Ghanaians on the amendment of Article 55(3) of the 1992 Constitution to introduce Multi-Partisan local government system in Ghana. He urged the electorate to be actively involved in the elections to make informed choices and democracy a reality.
Ms. Josephine Nkrumah, Chairman of the Commission urged the electorate to fully get involved in the upcoming District Level Elections and vote to amend the entrenched provision Article 55(3) that bans political parties from taking part in District Level Elections. The Chairman took the opportunity to clarify the difference between the MMDCEs elections and the Referendum and said the referendum, which is scheduled to take place alongside the District Level Elections on 17th December 2019, seeks to amend Article 55(3) of the 1992 Constitution, which is an entrenched provision, to allow political parties to participate in Local Government elections on party lines.
Ms. Nkrumah said the referendum must gather at least 40% voter turnout of the total registered voters in the country and at least 75% of that number must vote in favour of the proposal. She explained that Parliament has the responsibility to amend the non-entrenched provision Article 243 (1) with two-thirds voting to allow MMDCEs to be elected directly by the electorate.
Ms. Nkrumah mentioned that the NCCE’s educational activities scheduled to be undertaken during the three-month national campaign include: community durbars, stakeholder meetings, sensitization, and awareness-raising in educational institutions, dawn and dusk broadcasts, focus group discussions, lorry stations, markets, PWDs, visits to identifiable groups and inter-personal engagements, film shows, social media campaigns, radio and television engagements.
Hon. Adongo Fuseini, the Deputy Regional Minister, launched the Upper East Regional Public Sensitisation and Awareness Campaign on the DLEs and the Referendum. He stated that the election of MMDCEs by the electorate would eliminate the winner takes all syndrome and improve the quality of governance at the local level.
Present at the launch was the Chairman of the NCCE Ms. Josephine Nkrumah, Mr. Kojo Tito the Commission Secretary, the Deputy Regional Minister, and MP for the Zebilla Constituency, Hon. Frank Fuseinu Adongo, Bonaba Salifu Baba Atamale Alemyarum the presiding Chairman for the occasion and the President of the Upper East Regional House of Chiefs, Naba Olaundo A. Awuni among other sub-chiefs.