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The seminar was a follow up on the earlier dialogue in September 2018 organised by the EU Delegation, together with Member States, with some Members of Ghana Parliament to discuss the proposed reform of the election system for the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs).
Currently a proposal to amend Article 243(1) of the Constitution is being is discussed in Ghana Parliament, which will allow the direct election of MMDCEs instead of nomination by the President. Furthermore on December 10, 2019, a referendum on the amendment of Article 55(3) takes place to decide whether political participation in local governance elections will be allowed. These reforms mark an important step in the decentralisation process in Ghana and the strengthening of local governance.
Professor Roger Buch (Danish School of Media and Journalism) and Professor Andrea Buratti (University of Rome) each presented their respective countries' experiences during a seminar at Parliament on Monday 24 June.
They engaged with the audience, consisting of representatives of the diplomatic corps of the European Union and its Member States and various Members of Parliament, including the Deputy Minister of Local Government, Hon. Osei Bonsu Amoah. During her intervention, Mrs. Diana Acconcia, EU Ambassador to Ghana, stressed EU's support for decentralisation in Ghana and the importance of bipartisan dialogue to consolidate a vision for the future of local governance in Ghana.
Find attached the Presentations:
Early in the morning on Tuesday 25 June, Professor Buratti and Professor Buch engaged with a wider audience during a live interview on GBC Uniiq FM. Ghanaian listeners asked pertinent questions concerning the financial capacity of the Ghanaian local level and the compatibility with European cases.
Later that day, the debate continued at IDEG headquarters, in the presence of the Spanish Ambassador to Ghana, different representatives of civil society and the wider political spectrum. During the welcome address Mr. Paolo Salvia, Head of the Political Section of the EU Delegation, highlighted the importance of the proposed reform and how it touches the lives of every Ghanaian.
The European experts were joined on stage by Mr. Kwesi Jonah (IDEG) and gave a well-received presentation. Questions from the audience focussed on the impact of political participation on the local level and European examples of institutionalised forms of collaboration between different levels of government.