Minority understands benefits of partisanship in DLEs – Deputy Minister

Sunyani- The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in Parliament is rejecting the amendment of Article 55(3) of the 1992 Fourth Republican Constitution because of their parochial interest, Mrs. Patricia Appiagyei, the Member of Parliament for Asokwa has said.

The Electoral Commission EC) will be organising District Level Elections (DLEs) and a Referendum to amend the Article 55(3) which prohibits political parties from sponsoring a candidate, the use of existing political party symbols and canvassing for votes on the platform of a political party in DLEs.

It is slated for Tuesday, December 17 this year from 0700 hours to 1700 hours.

The Referendum is in fulfillment of a constitutional requirement for the electorate to approve or reject a question for the amendment of the Article 55(3) to introduce multi-partisan system into local level elections.

According to the EC, the poll is not an election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs).

Mrs. Appiagyei said the NDC was engaged in Parliamentary discourse, weighed and understood the benefits of allowing partisanship in the DLEs.

She therefore called on the electorate to shun the NDC’s “propaganda of lies” and vote “Yes” in the Referendum in the supreme interest of the nation.

Mrs. Appiagyei who is the Deputy Minister of Environment, Science and Technology was speaking at a public forum on Tuesday in Sunyani to sensitise the electorate on the impending DLEs and the referendum.

The Parliamentary Select Committee on Local Government and Rural Development is organising a nationwide public forum about the referendum to facilitate high voter turnout on the scheduled day.

Mrs. Appiagyei who led the Committee in its round to the Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions explained the introduction of partisanship in the DLEs would deepen the nation’s democracy and strengthen freedom of expression.

Mr. Kwasi Ameyaw-Cheremeh, the Majority Chief Whip and Member of Parliament for Sunyani East stated that already the New Patriotic Party and the NDC were strongly involved in the DLEs, hence the need for massive Yes vote to amend the provision.

Source: Ghana News Agency