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Multi-Party Democracy Commission Proposed   
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Dr Emmanuel Akwetey
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Civil society organisations have proposed the establishment of a Multi-Party Democracy Commission to regulate the activities of political parties.

The commission should have the power to convene dialogues and discuss broad national interest issues in addition to monitoring and strengthening an enabling environment for a stronger multi-party governance system.

It was one of the far-reaching proposals made by the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), the Civic Forum Initiative and other partners titled “Multi-Party Governance Reforms Proposal”.

The Executive Director of IDEG, Dr Emmanuel Akwetey, outlined the proposals at the inauguration of a national conversation and campaign on multi-party reforms in Accra Monday.

Democracy fund/manifestoes
The proposal called for the setting up of a multi-party democracy fund to support political parties to develop their manifestoes, policy programmes and annual conferences.

It said the fund should also assist political parties to build policy research departments within the parties.

The proposal stressed the need for political parties to translate their manifestoes into a four-year medium-term policy programme which they would present to the electorate and continue to work on it in the interval between elections.

“Policy-oriented annual conferences should be instituted and made mandatory for political parties, possibly beginning from 2016,” it said.

District elections
The proposal advocated the election of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) in either all the districts at a time or some and bring in the others over a period.

“Positions in MMDCEs should be fully and directly elective. End the presidential appointment of people to the assemblies,” it suggested.
Besides, the proposal said all elections at the assembly level should be party-based but open to individuals and groups other than political parties.

It explained that assembly elections should be based on a mixed member proportional representation system to strengthen representation and community cohesion at the local level.

Election cycle
The proposal called for the merger of presidential, parliamentary and district assembly elections, as well as the merger of all internal political party elections.

It emphasised the need for the country to define an election year and a campaign period for party elections.

The proposal advocated the strengthening of the Electoral Commission (EC) to modernise election administration and improve efficiency.
Source: Daily Graphic

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