The tenure of office of people elected to serve on the unit committees of the 216 metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) ends on October 7, 2019, on which day the committees will be dissolved.
The members of the committees who were elected and sworn in on October 5, 2015 will see their four-year tenure end on the same date this year. But because that day falls on a weekend, their tenure will be extended to Monday, the next working day.
This is in accordance with Article 2461(i) of the 1992 Constitution.
New members will be elected on December 17, and until then metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs) and their coordinating directors will take charge of the functions of the unit committees until new members are elected.
Already, all elected assembly members have been notified through a circular.
However, the Nkoranza South Municipal Assembly in the Bono East Region and the Lower Manya Krobo Municipal Assembly in the Eastern Region will not be affected by the directive as given by the sector Minister, Hajia Alima Mahama.
A Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr O.B. Amoah, told the Daily Graphic that the two assemblies were not affected because the tenure of office of members of the two assemblies would end later as they had late elections.
Elections at Lower Manya Krobo were held on October 21, 2018, after an initial deadlock in that district after the term of office of the previous members ended in May 2018.
At Nkoranza South, the process was disrupted when voters boycotted the election over their protest of not having redress to falling victims to a microfinance scam that led to the loss of millions of cedis of some residents.
The elections eventually took place on April 11, 2017.
He also explained that by the Local Government Act, the President could appoint people to serve on the unit committees, but that might not happen, given the closeness of the next elections.
“As it happened when the Supreme Court put the elections on hold in 2015 and people were appointed to help run the assemblies on an interim basis, the President can appoint people to serve in the interim when the tenure of office of the current members expire, but that is unlikely, as the next elections are only in December and the MMDCEs and their coordinating directors have been asked to take charge.
“The December 17 elections will not only be about the referendum to decide on the participation of political parties in MMDA elections but also to vote for new assembly members,” Mr Amoah indicated.
The elections have always been held in March. However, in 2015, the Electoral Commission was compelled to push the date to September 1 due to a court action.
The 2015 polls were set for March 3 but were suspended on the orders of the Supreme Court when an aspiring contestant challenged the EC for wrongful disqualification.
Eventually, the case was resolved and the elections held in September, with the members assuming office on October 5.