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Bill for election of MMDCEs laid in Parliament

The Government has laid in Parliament a Bill to amend the Constitution to allow for the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) in the country.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) in its 2016 manifesto promised to oversee the direct election of MMDCEs within 24 months of election into office, to coincide with the next District Assembly elections in 2019. The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development had earlier presented the Bill on the amendment of some articles in the 1992 Constitution back in October 2018.

The articles slated for amendment are Article 243 (1) on the appointment of MMDCEs by the President and Article 55 (3), which prohibits the involvement of political parties in district-level elections. On the roadmap for the election, the government has indicated that the election process would be in three phases; Pre-Referendum Activities, Referendum Activities, Post-Referendum Activities and the amendment of Article 55(3) of the 1992 Constitution.

The Pre-Referendum processes consist of the formation of an election committee, which was established in 2017 and the review of legislation and preparation of background document. The regional consultations and sensitization to raise and prepare for the referendum have also been conducted. A National stakeholders meeting on the election of MMDCEs had also been held in Accra, according to the government.

The government expects the referendum to be concluded by September 2019. Per Article 290 (4), at least 40 percent of the citizens are expected to vote at the referendum with 75 percent of them backing the Bill to be passed by Parliament and assented to by the President.

The Minister for Local Government and Rural Development, Hajia Alima Mahama has also previously said the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives will take off from June 2021 and the swearing in done August 1, 2021.

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