The Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, has accused the two major political parties, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) of being major culprits in the monetisation of the country’s electoral processes.
According to him, parliament as an arm of government and the country’s democracy could suffer a jolt if the trend continued, stressing that “the situation has reached alarming proportions.”
“The growing trend of monetisation in the country’s electoral processes has not only reached alarming proportions but the situation has reached the levels of a national crisis,” he emphasized.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu disclosed this when his ministry took its turn at the Meet-the-press series organised by the Ministry of Information in Accra yesterday.
He said if the trend continued parliament would suffer immensely since the system would only attract unqualified candidates with money to influence the electoral processes to be selected at the expense of more competent aspirants.
He noted that as part of strategies to deal with the situation, the ministry over the few years had been engaging in a series of stakeholder engagements and dialogues to interrogate the phenomenon with the view to implementing mutually agreed procedures.
The Minister who is the Majority Leader in Parliament said these engagements were sequel to the one organised with four political parties somewhere in May, adding that ” The engagement was guided by the following objectives: discuss the inadequacies of the existing modes of conducting primaries by the political parties.”
He said the Ministry was positioned to support Ghana’s democratic transformation by among other things supporting the deepening of democratic governance, assisting in the enhancement of political and administrative decentralisation through the harmonisation of relationship between Members of Parliament and Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives.
Furthermore, he said his outfit was facilitating the demystification of the perception of the executive dominance as well as promoting general consensus around the fundamental issues of development.
Dwelling on the mandate of the ministry, he said it was created to facilitate, coordinate, monitor and evaluate strategies which would lead to building consensus for the execution of government business in parliament through the deployment of skilled human resources and modern technology to enhance legislative process.
In addition to this, is monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of government policies and providing feedback to cabinet and parliament, he said.
By Cliff Ekuful
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