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DEBATE MOTION: DISTRICT CHIEF EXECUTIVES SHOULD BE ELECTED BUT NOT APPOINTED BY THE GOVERNMENT

STANCE: AGAINST SUPPORTING SPEAKER


Mr. Chairman, Panel of Judges, Accurate time-keeper, invited guests, Co-debators, Ladies and gentlemen, my name is ....................................... from Tepa Senior High School and I am here this afternoon as a supporting speaker against the motion that District Chief Executives should be elected but not appointed by the Government.

Mr. Chairman, my principal speaker has said a lot but I would like to reinforce the argument that electing DCEs will be the biggest mistake that Ghanas young democracy will endure. Why do I say that? Mr. Chairman, considering the time and money that we spend on the presidential and parliamentary elections in Ghana, coupled with the very high political tensions, doing so for DCEs will worsen the already bad situation. Electing DCE would be time consuming, expensive and slow down government business. More also, Mr. Chairman, in advanced countries where DCEs are elected, they generated their own revenue for development and payment of Chief Executives but some districts in Ghana will not be able to do this in Ghana since they depend solely on the district assembly common fund given by the central government for all development activities. Also, quite a number of districts in the country are made up of majority and minority ethnic groups and with such local elections, there is the likelihood that those from the majority ethnic groups will always be elected and this would make the minority ethnic group feel marginalised.

Ladies and gentlemen, when the minority ethnic group feel marginalised and excluded in local governance, they will begin to agitate to have a district of their own. This will introduce anarchy into the local governance system because the authorities would not be able to meet such demands, especially when such areas do not satisfy the criteria for becoming a district assembly. Mr. Chairman, panel of Judges, you will agree with me that elections do not necessarily produce efficient and competent persons but always the most popular, and that the DCEs position, unlike that of the member of parliament (MP) or the minister of state required a person with the competence to manage a limited liability company. The district assemblies have been setup as legal entity that can sue and be sued and therefore needs a manager with minimum competence to manage it effectively and efficiently.

Mr. Chairman, Panel of Judges, Accurate time-keeper, invited guests, Ladies and gentlemen, in this era of female empowerment, it can be noticed that district level elections had not produced enough female assembly members and that any attempt to make the position of the DCE elective would be a big blow to affirmative action; ladies and gentlemen, just take a look at our parliament and you will understand what I mean. With their appointments, the president can make conscious efforts at introducing gender balance. Mr. Chairman, Panel of Judges, Accurate time-keeper, invited guests, Ladies and gentlemen, I am positively sure, without any shred of doubt that my principal speaker and I have been able to convince you beyond any reasonable doubt that any attempt at electing District Chief Executive will spell doom for our dear nation Ghana. Thank you.

PRINCIPAL SPEAKERS SUMMARY Mr. Chairman, Panel of Judges, Accurate time-keeper, invited guests, Co-debators, Ladies and gentlemen, I would be glad if you were swayed by the arguments of my opponents in to believing that District Chief Executives should be elected but not appointed by the Government. In conclusion to my earlier submission, I would like to summarise and further reinforce that.................. 1. We can learn form the advance democracies but we cannot copy blindly every model of theirs into our young and fletching democracy. 2. The current system where the president appoints the DCEs in consultation with other stakeholders and subsequent approval of the district assembly members is constitutional and democratic enough. 3. Election does not necessarily produce competent people to manage such a huge institution like the district. 4. People within the district will have to suffer lack of development and progress for a long period of four years before they can get the opportunity to vote them out, a situation quite unacceptable. 5. Election of DCEs will make nonsense of the issue of ultimate responsibility to which Ghanaians hold the president in all matters regarding the state. 6. Ghana is a unitary state that must be held together and led unilaterally by the executive president and his appointees. 7. There is greatest likelihood of opposition member being elected to represent the present that he opposes, ideologically and politically etc. This has serious implication on security and resource allocation.