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Review of district level elections is to make governance functional – Afari-Gyan

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Dr. Afari Gyan - Electoral Commissioner

Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC), on Monday stressed that the review of statutes governing local government elections were aimed at making governance at the grassroots more functional.

He said the review would see numbers of electoral areas being raised from 5,000 to about 6,000.

Dr Afari-Gyan was speaking at the EC’s Volta Regional Media Dialogue on District Level Elections in Ho.

It was organized by the EC in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and facilitated by KAB Governance Consult, a non governmental organisation.

He said under the proposed new scheme of things, Units would effectively become conterminous with Electoral Areas.

Dr Afari-Gyan said each Unit Committee would now have five people only, and with no government appointees, putting total number of Unit Committee Members at about 30,000 instead of about 225,000.

He said the changes had been prompted by the increasing populations and expansion in some cases far beyond the confines of settlements existing at the time of carving out the electoral areas.

Dr Afari said while the electoral areas would make the assemblies more representative, operations of the unit committees would become less cumbersome.

He said whereas in the old scheme of things it was only the EC that was mandated to mount platforms for candidates, the new law created the opportunity for some other organizations to resource the EC to mount those platforms or do it themselves under the EC’s supervision.

Dr Afari-Gyan said effective local governance was the bedrock of national development and must be made to work effectively.

He called on the media to help educate the public on the importance of District Level Elections to whip up public interest.

Dr Afari-Gyan said education must make people understand that local governance affected their welfare and not for the good of others.

Ms Laurentia Kpatakpa, Volta Regional Director of EC, urged the media to ensure that the appropriate messages about the process got to the stakeholders on time.

Source: GNA

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