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24.05.2005 NDC News

NDC condemns appointment of losing candidates as DCEs/MCEs

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Accra, May 24, GNA - The National Democratic Congress (NDC) on Tuesday said it was concerned about President John Agyekum Kufuor appointing New Patriotic Party (NPP) parliamentary candidates who lost the 2004 parliamentary elections, particularly in opposition strongholds, as District, Municipal and Metropolitan Chief Executives.

A statement signed by the NDC Acting General Secretary, Mr Bede A. Ziedeng, said the party acknowledged the fact that these appointees were Ghanaians and under normal circumstances had the right to be appointed to such positions provided they were qualified.

However, it said, the current practice where it had virtually become automatic for losing candidates to be appointed as DCEs or M/MCEs gave cause for great concern.

"In the first place, it amounts to undermining democracy, because these were people who were rejected by their own constituents at an election and the government is recycling them by using the 'back door' to now impose them on the people as their political heads.

"Flowing from the above, such appointees are likely to be vindictive, particularly against people who are identified as having campaigned against them in the parliamentary elections. The politics of retribution and vindictiveness is therefore being institutionalised by these appointments. It is as if to say to these appointees, 'Go, teach these people a lesson'".

The NDC said such appointments created unnecessary rivalry between the elected MPs and the DCEs, M/MCEs and served as a recipe for non-co-operation between the two, which did not augur well for the development of the area.

"The NDC is of the view that the net effect of this policy may be poor management of the various District, Municipalities and Metropolis, and this can be counter-productive to the detriment of the development of the area."

The NDC said it was its belief that if more prudence was exhibited by government in appointing DCEs, M/MCEs, such unnecessary tension and bitter competition between DCEs, M/MCEs and MPs could be minimised if not avoided completely.

"It is completely unacceptable for the government to view the position of DCE, M/MCE as compensation for NPP candidates who lost the parliamentary elections.

"The NDC wishes to advise that appointments to these positions be guided by competence, acceptability and the ability to achieve the development goals for the various Districts, Municipals or Metropolis, instead of merely using them to facilitate political patronage."

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