The Centre for Local Governance Advocacy (CLGA) has called on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to withdraw any Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executive (MMDCEs) nominee who fails to garner the two-thirds majority of votes cast by assembly members after the second round of voting and present a new candidate for consideration.
It said the withdrawal of such nominees would give the general assembly the opportunity of exercising their right to get another qualified person as MMDCE.
“This will prevent the imposition of unpopular and incompetent persons on the assembly,” a statement by the acting Executive Director of CLGA, Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso, said.
Review standing order
The statement further called on the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) to review the 2019 model standing orders for MMDAs to prevent unpopular nominees from becoming MMDCEs.
The provisions of Part Three of the revised Model Standing Orders (2019) allows the President to nominate or re-nominate a candidate as many times as he wishes if the candidate fails to pull the required two-thirds majority of votes cast by assembly members.
The CLGA in its statement, however, said it believed that the provision had the potential of imposing “unpopular and seemingly incompetent persons” as MMDCEs on the respective assemblies.
“It also gives the General Assembly little or no option to choose a popular and a competent person, and this has the potential of undermining popular participation in governance and local democracy,” the statement added.
It observed that democracy was about making choices, so any limit placed on the General Assembly by the power to re-nominate a failed candidate as many times as the President wished undermined the power of assembly members to freely choose competent and popular leaders for the assembly.
In that regard, the centre in its statement urged assembly members to bear in mind that they were only exercising delegated powers from the electorate during the confirmation of nominated MMDCEs, for which reason they must do away with selfish interests.
“The process for approving nominees makes the General Assembly an electoral college and must, therefore, be exercised with due care, devoid of partisanship and unnecessary influence,” it stressed.
While congratulating the MMDCE nominees on their nomination, it urged those who failed to poll the needed votes to accept the situation in good faith.
The statement urged all unsuccessful nominees to extend an olive branch to the nominated MMDCEs to promote peace and facilitate development at the local level.
“Unsuccessful nominees are advised to prevail upon their followers to eschew agitations and acts that will disturb the peace of the country,” it stated.