Mr Adjei-Boateng said the local governance system in Ghana was designed to promote people centred development and governance; and “this is the foundation for social inclusion of the people for whom we initiate interventions to improve their lives.”
He said it was important to recall that since the inception of the current decentralisation and local government process, various efforts had been made to devolved functions, powers, competences, skills and resources to district assemblies.
He noted that in spite of the successes chalked by the decentralisation process, there existed a number of challenges in promoting greater citizen participation in local governance processes.
He said these challenges include apathy from citizens on local governance issues, lack of basic understanding of the roles and responsibilities of key stakeholders, as well as lack of innovative strategies for a meaningful engagement of metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs).
“For instance, metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs) have remained nominated by the President, approved by two-thirds majority votes of the assembly and subsequently appointed by the President.”
He said certainly, the need for a change in the mode of appointing MMDCEs had been identified as a governance gap in Ghana’s local governance system.
He said allowing citizens to popularly elect their own leaders in Ghana was long overdue, as the current mode of appointing MMDCEs had not provided the accountability that the people yearned for.