Country Director for SEND Ghana, George Osei-Akoto Bimpeh, has called on political parties in Ghana to include the citizenry in the drafting of their manifestos to ensure that there is social equality in the implementation of policies.
According to him, SEND Ghana has discovered that most of the time, manifestos drafted by political parties focus on what the parties want to do rather than what the populace wants.
In an interview with host Samuel Eshun on the Happy Morning Show, he said: â€œWe have noted that if the citizenry has a way of informing political parties on what they really want, it can help the political parties draft their manifestoes with the peopleâ€™s ideasâ€.
He noted that to achieve a participatory format of drafting manifestos, SEND Ghana took the initiative in ten regions to research on what the citizenry really wants.
â€œWe have given copies of these findings to all major political parties in Ghana. It is up to them to work with it. When they bring their manifestos out, we will probe and see if they have included the peopleâ€™s ideas and then we will let the citizenry know which political party will eradicate poverty and social inequality with its policiesâ€, he added.
When quizzed by Samuel Eshun if the political parties were not already involving the citizenry in the drafting of their manifestos, he responded: â€œWe donâ€™t doubt that the political parties may consult with the people but at this point, we have brought a participatory consultation with the peopleâ€.
He furthered that these discussions were especially important because of the adverse effects of theÂ COVID-19Â pandemic on the economy.
â€œResearch has shown thatÂ COVID-19Â could turn back the clock 30 years on global poverty. This will really affect Ghana because our poverty rate 30 years ago is higher than the current poverty rate. It is therefore important for political parties to introduce social intervention programs that will relieve the citizens of their sufferingâ€, he said.
SEND Ghana is a policy research and advocacy civil society organization providing grassroots and individuals with the skills to hold public officers accountable.