Celebrated Ghanaian economist and business consultant Kwame Pianim has expressed sadness over the decision by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to call off the December 17 referendum.
Speaking in an exclusive interview on Business Focus on TV3, Mr. Pianim told host Paa Kwesi Asare that he was sad the President had to bow to pressure from some “selfish politicians”.
According to him, the decision to get political parties involved in district level elections goes as far back as the 1990s and was agreed by almost all the political parties.
He, therefore, found it strange that Ghanaians will be against political party involvement in the elections at the lower level.
”Read the manifesto of all the political parties, we said that. I’m surprised that some Ghanaians are saying that we don’t want politics to be extended to the foundation of our nation.”
President Akufo-Addo called off the referendum on Sunday, stating there was no consensus for it to be held.
Akufo-Addo aborts December 17 referendum over lack of consensus
He also directed the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development to withdraw the bill which would allow Ghanaians to elect their own Metropolitan, Municipal, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) .
Mr. Pianim, who praised the bold step taken by the President to see through the election of MMDCEs, said he had wished the promise was fulfilled.
According to him, “[Former] President [John] Kufuor had to back down due to agitation by foot soldiers who didn’t want the election of MMDCEs because it was an opportunity to appoint party people.”