The Independent Candidates Association of Ghana (ICAG), a group of individuals aiming to contest various positions in the 2020 election, is advocating for a referendum to change the second round of voting where the two political parties with the highest votes get the opportunity to go head-to-head for the presidential slot.
The group proposed that the two parties with the highest votes must be given the opportunity to form a government with the minority parties, indicating that the “party with the highest votes can be given the opportunity to convince the minority parties to add their votes to attain the 50 per cent plus a vote”.
“If the first party fails to do so, the opportunity should be given to the second party with the highest votes to also convince the smaller parties to add their votes after which a government could be formed,” The President of ICAG, Mr Jacob Osei Yeboah, said in an interview with the Daily Graphic.
According to him, the second round of election being practiced in Ghana was not the best since it “creates room for the two biggest political parties to do everything within their powers to win power”.
Apart from the state having to cough huge resources to plan the run-off election, Mr Yeboah said political parties “are forced to do everything within their power to get the needed funding for a second campaign”.
“This is where you see political parties enter into partnership with organisations or individuals to sponsor them. The parties, in their desperate state, offer the sponsors whatever they want so that they get the finances for the second round,” he said.
Mr Yeboah said a lot of contracts given to people or organisations were entered during election year, adding that “most of the resources of the state have been sold out to organisations that sponsored parties”.
Using Germany as an example, he said the country “does not allow for a second round of election but rather creates an avenue for the leading party to form a government with the minority party”.
“In this way, no more resources are spent on election and parties are not forced to seek sponsorship that would make them enter into wrong contracts,” Mr Yeboah said.
He said allowing the leading party to form a government with the minority parties would also address the winner takes all politics, adding that “such a government will be more nationalistic”.
Additionally, Mr Yeboah said it would also make minor political parties to become more relevant in the country since the biggest parties would need their support in the extreme case.
He expressed the hope that Ghana would consider the proposal and offer a proper dialogue on the need to change second round of election.