Suggestions by former President John Agyekum Kufour that the current four-year term for Ghanaian presidents should be extended to five years is ideal for this country, Mr Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo, Director of Elections of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), has said.

Mr Kufuor’s proposal is based on his conviction that the status quo is not helpful for Ghana’s development.

Speaking at the International Conference of African Philosophy and Studies at the University of Ghana on the theme: ‘Democracy, Justice and Development in Africa: 50 Years after Independence’ on Thursday August 11, the former president said: “If the framers of the constitution had really addressed the issue of development for our young, struggling communities, I am sure copying the American four-year [term] wouldn’t have been part of the constitution. But we just went in there, talked about multi-party democracy, set four-year terms and said if people chose and proposed a government and other things, that would be the end of it, making it seem like we expect much development, much transformation within four years of governance.”

Speaking in an interview with Emefa Apawu on Class91.3FM’s 505 news programme on Thursday, 11 August, in his personal capacity, Mr Ofosu-Ampofo said: “It is a good call but, perhaps, it has come too late in the day because I believe that [former] President Kufuor could have made this [suggestion] very forcefully during the period of constitutional review.”

“As a former president, he carries a lot of weight and his views are well respected. I believe he could have pushed that agenda. …I have personally taken the position that five years will have been most ideal for us as a country, judging from the fact that we virtually spend the first six months of being in office to set up government, put institutions in place and appointments, etc., and six months to elections is virtually dedicated to campaign activities here and there. So, one would have thought that if we had the five years, then, of course, one will get four solid years to do governance.”

He stressed: “…It is a suggestion that is very useful but for me it has come too late in the day.”

Source: Ghana/ClassFMonline.com/91.3 FM

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