A pre-election survey conducted by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), has identified education, health, and employment as the topmost concerns of Ghanaians that must be addressed.
The survey, conducted in September this year, has 21.2 per cent of the respondents from 15 out of the 16 regions, (except for Western Region) mentioning education as their pressing need, which must be prioritised by political parties.
Dubbed: “Matters of Concern to the Ghanaian Voter,” the survey, funded by the Government and European Union, sought to examine the issues of concern to the Ghanaian voter and perceptions on the performances of previous governments in addressing key developmental issues of the country.
The study found 19 broad issues respondents want to be addressed and these include; women and children’s needs, youth development, corruption, social services such as sanitation, provision of KVIP and potable water, agriculture and sports.
The rest are roads and infrastructure, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), environment and climate change, social intervention policies, rule of law, peaceful co-existence, and patriotism.
Dr Henrietta Asante-Sarpong, the Director of Research, Gender and Equality Department at the NCCE, who presented the findings, said one third of the respondents mentioned the need for the next government to continue with the Free Senior High School Education Policy in addition to providing more classrooms and boarding facilities to accommodate students.
On employment, 83.0 per cent of respondents highlighted the need to create more job opportunities through the establishment of factories.
On health, the government providing adequate infrastructure and improving the National Health Insurance Scheme were two key issues that at least one in every five of the respondents suggested should be addressed.
Dr Asante-Sarpong said the respondents (33.3%) wanted parliamentarians to enact laws to extend the Free SHS Policy to all levels of education.
On employment, 65.9 per cent suggested that parliamentarians (MPs) enacted laws to support the creation of more jobs, whereas in health 45.1 per cent expected MPs to lobby for adequate health infrastructure, with 17.1 per cent calling for laws that addressed challenges of the NHIS.
Mrs Josephine Nkrumah, Chairperson of the NCCE, said the survey gave the Commission the opportunity to interrogate the interventions and programmes of governments and see how responsive they were to the particular issues raised by the respondents.
“Ultimately, democracy is about the welfare of the citizenry and this document actually provide that compass that allows us to drive interventions that best suits the welfare of Ghanaians,” she said.
Madam Diana Acconcia, the Head of EU Delegation to Ghana, who launched the report, commended the NCCE for the survey and assured it of the EU’s support to deliver on its mandate.