Put referendum on hold

Tema- The Youth Bridge Foundation (YBF) has called on government to put the referendum on hold and build bipartisan consensus on it.

The YBF indicated that such a major move to allow political parties to participate in the election of MMDCEs cannot be carried out successfully without a bipartisan consensus.

This was contained in a press statement signed by Ms Esther Yayra Attipoe, Legal and Advocacy Manager, Youth Bridge Foundation.

According to YBF, the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) must genuinely reach out to the opposition to build consensus adding that the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) must also cooperate with the government when there were genuine overtures to build bridges on the issues.

It indicated that there also seemed to be lack of elite consensus on the need for the referendum to amend Article 55(3) to pave the way for political parties to fully participate in local governance in future.

The YBF further proposed that massive sensitization and education of the citizenry, particularly the youth must be carried out to promote a meaningful participation of the youth in democratic processes consistent with Article 11 of African Youth Charter and also whip up popular enthusiasm as a national and not partisan responsibility.

The statement added that development partners must support the relevant civil society organizations, to work in partnership with the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) to undertake a nationwide non-partisan public education on the core issues of the referendum taking cognizance of the varying levels of youth literacy.

They revealed that snap checks with the Foundation’s youth constituents, point to limited knowledge about the core issues of the referendum and apathy among the youth.

This we maintain will adversely impact on the quality of choice that may be made and also make it difficult for the 40-75 threshold to be achieved for the motion of the referendum to be carried.

Source: Ghana News Agency