The Institute of Economic Affairs, (IEA), has revealed in a new research that the various political parties in Ghana spend as much as 800, 000 cedis monthly in election years.

A Senior Research Fellow at the IEA in charge of governance, Dr. Ransford Gyampo addressing the media on Thursday stated despite the important roles played by the political parties in the country they are the “most neglected state institutions.”

“The unfortunate thing for us in Ghana is that in spite of the numerous roles that they are supposed to perform to give full meaning to multi-party democracy, political parties are the most neglected of all state institutions.

“They are made to operate purely as private organisations with virtually no state support in their establishment, maintenance and well-being. Our 1992 constitution imposes certain duties on them. Article 55, section 3 mandates political parties to shape the political will of the people, to disseminate information on socio-economic and political ideas and to sponsor candidates for any elections to any public office other than district assemblies and lower local government units,” Dr. Gyampo said.

He added that “to be able to perform this function, they require some funding. It costs political parties a lot to exist and perform this constitutionally-imposed mandate. On the average, my research shows that it costs political parties up to 100, 000 cedis to run and maintain themselves in all districts of the country just for one month during off peak election seasons; in between elections.”

Giving a breakdown of the finances of political parties in Ghana, Dr. Gyampo stated that political parties spend as much as 8, 000 cedis on average on the salaries of their staff, and spend as much as 2, 500 cedis for parties to rent and maintain office spaces across the country.

He added that political parties also spend on average 7, 000 cedis every month just on utilities to keep their offices running.

“During electioneering campaigns, it could cost as much as 800, 000 cedis a month for political parties to run their activities. On the average it costs as much as 2, 500 cedis for parties to rent and maintain office spaces across the country. Again it costs 8,000 cedis every month to maintain and pay the salaries of just about 3 staff.

“They also spend on average 7, 000 cedis every month just on utilities to keep their offices running. And then in order to get people to vote for them, they have to attend social gatherings like funerals, weddings, naming ceremonies and when they go, they are expected to make donations just to be able to look attractive to the people. It could cost up to 10, 000 cedis a month.”

“The unhealthy and do or die affair nature of electoral competition would, in my view, minimise drastically if would-be losers know that they would still survive in opposition after defeat.

“If political parties know that they would be able to run their parties and match the ruling party in terms of campaign, the hostility, acrimony and desire to win elections to win at all cost that threatens our peace will also reduce. This is one of the defining features of winner-takes-all politics that the proposal for public funding of political parties is seeking to address.”

Source: Ghana/Starrfmonline.com/103.5FM

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.