Gabriel Edo Comorji, bishop of the Keta Acaci Diocese of the Roman Catholic Church, confirmed the need to inform citizens about the role of parliamentarians in national development.
He said that citizens’ expectations of MEPs in all aspects of the EU’s growth are rather worrying.
Pastor Kumorji said that the rising expectations of the MPs seriously affected their work, but that they could not stop them because of their influence on the success of the elections.
This includes the provision of private goods in the form of favours, personal assistance, alms for local party leaders, business owners, activists and sympathisers, he said.
In a speech on his behalf, Reverend Kumorjee stated that the public does not appreciate the mandates of parliamentarians and that few voters are aware of their true role.
He said MPs are often seen as initiators of development projects in constituencies and districts whose roles are not defined by law.
Kumorji said at a public meeting organized by the Justice and Peace Commission of the Catholic Diocese of Keta Akatsi in the Volta area.
It focused on the role of parliament, local government and participatory governance in community development.
The purpose of the meeting was to provide a platform for the four parliamentary candidates from the Akatsi district in the south of the country and the members of the community to discuss development issues of interest to the community, while correcting the misconception that development projects are the sole mandate of the parliamentarians.
Rev. Kumorji noted that it is the task of parliamentarians to represent, explain the needs of their people through parliamentary debates, participate in legislative activities for the benefit of their voters and lobby the government for development projects in their various fields.
He explained that community participation is crucial to ensure a clear understanding of the mandates of parliamentarians and local authorities in the development agenda, allowing for an integrated and inclusive discussion on the ground.
He advised all well-meaning Ghanaians to ensure peace before, during and after the upcoming parliamentary elections.
Government institutions such as the National Commission for Civic Education, the Electoral Commission and the Police Force of Ghana gave brief lectures on the need for peaceful elections.
Rev. Vincent Adzica, director of NCCE for South Akatsi, who spoke about the rights and responsibilities of citizens during the elections, said that Ghanaians have the right to fully exercise their right to vote.
Police chief Joseph Atsu Dzineku, commander of the southern Akatsi police, said his unit would not refrain from arresting anyone who might cause problems during the elections.
Mr Akatsi Tatormé, leader of Torgbui Akoto VII, who chaired the event, called on the participants to act as ambassadors for peace.
Among the groups present were the leaders of the Akatsi Youth Parliament and the local Akatsi Church Council.
Mr. Stephen Abuku, Chairman of the Akatsi Committee for Justice and Peace of the RC Church, paid tribute to the participants’ commitment to peace.
Mrs Akorfa Bouabasa Asamoa, District Electoral Officer, informed the participants about the electoral process.
Three of the four parliamentary candidates present, Bernard Ahyaphor, current MP, Sanauchi Murana, National Democratic Party candidate, and Atah Nana Maxwell, Conventional People’s Party candidate, pledged to ensure peace and stability before, during and after the elections.
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