Accra, Oct. 29, GNA - Professor Emmanuel Gyimah-Boadi, Executive Director of the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), on Thursday noted that Ghana's "system of governance does not necessarily empower Members of Parliament (MP's) to play effective roles as agents of development".
He has, therefore, asked parliamentary candidates for Election 2004 to appreciate the constitutional, legal as well as the economic and political constraints affecting the work of MPs and not to make promises that they could not fulfil.
Prof. Gyimah-Boadi made the point in Accra, at a workshop for about 60 aspiring MPs from 14 constituencies in the southern part of Ghana in preparation for the Constituency Candidate Debates to be organised by the CDD from next week.
The objective of the workshop was to expose the participants to key issues and topics to be covered during the planned debates to be held in 25 selected constituencies in all the 10 regions.
The parliamentary candidates would be offered the platform to indicate how they would mobilize the requisite political will and resources to support especially the policy and programmes geared towards the realisation of the goals of the Ghana National Poverty Reduction Strategy.
Prof. Gyimah-Boadi called on the candidates to base their electioneering campaigns on issues and not personalities. He said the debates would focus on local government administration, the deepening of the decentralisation process, control of political corruption, promotion of transparency and public accountability and meeting the challenges posed by the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
Prof. Gyimah-Boadi said a similar workshop would be organised for 50 parliamentary candidates from 11 constituencies in Kumasi next Saturday.
He said the CDD was interested in reducing the salience of ethnicity in the Ghanaian electoral politics, but most importantly to help the electorate to make informed choices at the polls. CDD-Ghana is an independent, non-governmental organisation(NGO) that is facilitating the advancement of democracy in Ghana and Africa through research, publications and holding of seminars and other educational programmes.