The Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO) is set to deploy 1,000 observers to monitor the upcoming December 17 national referendum which will allow Ghanaians to elect their Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs).
The acting Chairperson of CODEO, Sheikh Arimiyao Shaibu who disclosed this at the launch of the 2019 Election Support Intervention said 260 civic educators will also be deployed to raise awareness on the process.
“CODEO will recruit, train and deploy thousand election day observers on December 17. These observers will be deployed to systematically and randomly selected polling stations nationwide to observe election day processes and to contribute to enhancing the transparency of election day proceedings.”
Meanwhile, the Chairperson of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) Josephine Nkrumah wants citizens to actively participate in the local government elections.
“They are more interested in the general elections, parliamentary and presidential elections and I keep saying to people that it is important but the one that touches your everyday life, the things that make your life more comfortable, those are the things that should concern us most. How many of us can go into Parliament and go and make submissions on the floor of the House? Never! But at the District Assembly it affords every citizen that opportunity to participate.”
The Electoral Commission has scheduled December 17, 2019 for the referendum.
The election of MMDCEs was a major campaign promise of the New Patriotic Party in the run-up to the 2016 election.
Government has already presented the amendment of Article 243 (1) of the 1992 constitution bill which requires the President to appoint Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) to Parliament.
When passed, all MMDCEs would be elected by Universal Adult Suffrage after the 2020 general election.
Currently, Article 243 (1) of the 1992 Constitution stipulates that District Chief Executives for every district are to be appointed by the President with the prior approval of not less than two-thirds majority of members of the assembly present and voting at the meeting.
In addition, the Bill amending Article 55 (3) would also pave the way for political parties to sponsor candidates for elections of the MMDCEs and the Assembly Members.