Low patronage in voters register exhibition could affect District elections — NCCE

By Emmanuel Gamson

Takoradi, Nov. 09, GNA – The Western Regional Directorate of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has expressed worry over the low turn-out during the just ended nationwide voter register exhibition exercise by the Electoral Commission. 

Mr Justice Yaw Ennin, the Western Regional NCCE Director, who raised concern about people’s lack of enthusiasm about the exercise in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Takoradi, said citizens’ lack of interest resulting in the low turnout could affect voters’ participation in the upcoming District Level Elections (DLEs). 

He said DLEs had generally been characterised by low voter turn-out over the years, and that the 2023 elections could suffer the same fate. 

Mr Ennin said, “The DLEs are the bedrock of our democracy, so if the citizens are disinterested, then that is a cause for worry.” 

He attributed the situation to low publicity on the part of stakeholders and said more needed to be done to whip up public interest in the upcoming DLEs. 

Aside publicity, there was the need for stakeholders to revisit the call for a referendum to seek the inputs from Ghanaians to amend Article 55 (3) of the 1992 Constitution to allow the participation of political parties in district level elections. 

The NCCE Director said involving political parties in DLEs would help resolve the issue of less citizens’ participation, since those parties had more resources to convince and mobilise their supporters for such an exercise. 

He stressed the need for the citizenry to be interested in making decisions that would enhance the country’s decentralisation system and drive transformation in their communities. 

On ensuring inclusivity in local governance, Mr Ennin said: “Marginalised groups like youth, women and Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) must be encouraged to participate in local governance to value their inputs and bridge the developmental gaps in their various areas.” 

He appealed to the authorities to ensure institutions responsible for public education like the NCCE were adequately resourced to help them carry out their mandates successfully.