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18.11.2008 Elections

DFP opposes election of DCEs

DFP opposes election of DCEs
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Mr Emmanuel Ansah-Antwi, Presidential candidate of the Democratic Freedom Party (DFP), has stated that he was opposed to the suggestion that the position of a District Chief Executive (DCE) be elective.

He said the current system of nominating DCEs only needed some few amendments to make the system function more efficiently.

Mr Ansah-Antwi noted that the election of DCEs as proposed by the presidential candidates of the NPP, CPP, NDC and PNC at the just ended Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) debate in Tamale, would spell doom for an already polarized country.

The DFP presidential candidate expressed these sentiments when he paid a courtesy call on the Regent of Dagbon, Kampakuya Naa Abdulai Yakubu at his palace in Yendi on Sunday.

Mr Asante-Antwi said under a DFP government, chiefs would be given a place in the district assemblies to serve as checks and balances on DECs to make them more accountable to the people at the grassroots level.

He noted that the district assemblies were non-partisan and explained that it was for this reason that the constitution made provisions for the appointment of DCEs.

He therefore warned that any attempt to make DCEs stand on party tickets would create a greater problem of reconciling the people of the country.

Mr Asante-Antwi said he would place the Department of Births and Deaths under chiefs and give them the mandate to register all births in the country.

He also indicated that sanitation, as well as arbitration of minor crimes would be under the care of chiefs at the various districts to help expedite such cases and allow the courts to handle major crimes including drugs trafficking.

Mr Asante-Antwi said a DFP government would create a “green revolution” in the country by giving agriculture the topmost priority on its development agenda since about 60 per cent of the people were in the agricultural sector.

Additionally, he said, subsidies would be provided to farmers to motivate them to cultivate more food to feed the nation and make farming more attractive.

He said such an initiative would also encourage the youth to take farming as a profession to earn a decent living.

Dr. Obed Yao Asamoah, the life patron of the party, later addressing a rally, said the north had witnessed a lot of conflicts and the time had come for the people to shun violence and embrace peace to create a congenial atmosphere for the development of the area.

Dr Asamoah noted that the youth had been in the forefront of provoking violence and called on them to change their attitude to politics and promote peace and unity.

He said: “The change must not only come from politicians but also from the youth and when that is done, politicians will find it difficult to use the youth to cause mayhem in the country”.

He said the DFP would not pay attention to only the cocoa sector as had been done by past and current governments but would create markets for other produce to help boost the country's economy.

Mr Danladi Suleman, the DPF Parliamentary Candidate for Yendi, said the north had been marginalized by the colonial masters and both past and current governments, and therefore called on the people to take advantage of the “new wind of change” and vote the DFP to power in the December polls.

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