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13.03.2009 Editorial

Adjiri Blankson & elections of DCEs


One of the major promises made by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) prior to the 2000 general elections was the election of the Metropolitan, Municipal and District chief executives (MMDCEs). Unfortunately, after the party won power, it abandoned the idea. Though the media kept on reminding the Kufuor government to honour that promise, nothing good came out of it. p> Now, two months after losing power, the former mayor of Accra, Nii Adjiri Blankson has resurrected the idea that MCEs should be elected through universal adult suffrage. Though The Chronicle fully supports his call, we think it is rather a stab in the back of Ghanaians because he was a leading member of the immediate past government that made the promise as far back as 2000 to make the MMDCEs position elective, which they failed to do.

We concede that there are a lot of disadvantages that goes with the elections of DCEs. Looking at the nature of politics that we are practising in this country, any DCE that is not in support of the government can work against the latter and make it unpopular in the face of the electorate. The President of the day would have no power to remove him from office because the people elected him. With this reality in view, both the NPP and NDC are afraid to sanction the election of the DCEs.

Despite these disadvantages and the double standards as displayed by Nii Adjiri Blankson, The Chronicle thinks it would be totally wrong to discard the call for elections of the DCEs. As noted by the former Accra mayor, the position had already been politicised, therefore, it would not be difficult to make it elective. If DCEs know that when they under perform the electorate would vote them out of office, they would do the right things, unlike the present situation where the President can decide to maintain them contrary to the wishes of the people.

The Chronicle, therefore, calls for a holistic debate on the matter by all stakeholders, to come to an acceptable conclusion. Where possible, they could come out with guidelines that these elected DCEs would follow so that the issue about the undermining of the ruling government is corrected.

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