Ghana Lost Its Federalism Lessons For Others Countries

Ghana Lost Its Federalism Lessons For Others Countries

The majority of the 54 countries in Africa are uni-national the power to rule. These countries is mainly in a centralised state. The only exceptions are that Ethiopia along with Nigeria are federally recognize. While others such as South Africa, the Comoros, Sudan, South Sudan and Somalia. South Sudan Democratic Republic of Congo, and Somalia contain a few elements of federalism.

Federalism is the division of the power of a central government and regional government. Each level has a specific level of authority over various areas and regional. Governments have the power to set local policies as well as raise their own revenues.

Ghana isn’t known as a federation in Africa. But, its existence as an independent state in the year 1957 began as a loosely constituted federal entity. With relatively high levels of autonomy regionally incorporated into the constitution.

The guidelines to change the arrangement were extremely stringent because the advocates of federalism. Wanted protection against unilateral changes made by the federal government.

Regional Officials Of The Government Countries

But, over six decades on, regional officials of the government have no authority. To decide on the policies they choose to implement. Regional ministers are appoint by the president. Regional policy is govern by the central government ministry and the regions receive direct funding by central government-manage funds.

How did this happen? How did this happen? Africa the norm is that dramatic shifts such as this can only occur when a ruling government is dissolve. And the country’s constitution was dissolve via coups or d’etats. However, my research suggests that gradual changes have contributed to this conclusion in Ghana.

I followed Ghana’s development throughout the past 60 years (1957 from 1957 to 2017). During the transition from a federal system to an established unitary arrangement. I observed that throughout this time there was an ongoing erosion of regional autonomy.

This was the result of several amendments to the constitution, particularly those that were draft in the year 1960, the year Ghana was declare a republic and in 1969 when the first president of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah was deposed .

From my findings, I believe that constitutional protections should not consider to taken for grant. They can be change and the manner in which they change is dependent on choices that the stakeholders take.

These findings , along with the reality of politics suggests that other regional federations within Africa could be at risk in the same way.

Ghana’s First Federal Government Countries

The state of Ghana was create in the year 1957 through a merger of four regions comprising The British colony in Ghana, the Gold Coast, Ashanti, Trans-Volta Togoland and the British Protectorate Northern Territories. This arrangement suggested it was a federalist approach to governance as the best feasible option for the future.

The idea of a federal government was the main point of contention during the period leading up to the declaration of independence from British Colonial rule

On one side was the Convention People’s Party led by Kwame Nkrumah who wanted total unity. On the other hand were the alliance of opposition, led by Asantes as well as their political wings, called the National Liberation Movement together with the United Party led by K.A Busia, who favored full federalism.

The dispute was settle with a compromise in the 2005 constitution, which gave regions autonomy. The chiefs of the native tribes the regions were govern by their regional assemblies. They were in charge of the control of financial expenditures along with by-laws and other services provided by the government in their respective regions. Referendums were need to change the boundaries of the region. Any modifications to this constitution had to be approve by two thirds members of each regional council.

Referendum Requirements Countries

However, under the constitution of 1960 the regional assemblies as well as the referendum requirements were eliminated and replaced by a the national parliamentary approval.

Additionally, chiefs were removed to the position of regional heads, and replaced by Centrally-appointed regional commissioners. The referendum requirement was reintroduced with less stringent versions in the constitutions of 1969 and 1979, however neither the regional assemblies or chiefs as their leaders were reinstated.

The constitution of 1992 maintains the referendum thresholds set in the Constitution of 1979. However, it has not restored chiefs or regional assemblies to head the regional assemblies. The regional administrations don’t have the legislative, executive and financial autonomies that they had prior to their independence.

With regard to the loss of the autonomy of regional governments, a constitution countries review committee in the year 2011 suggest this regional authority should be regard as a an integral part of the central government.

The Why And The How

Based upon my research, I conclud the following: Ghana has lost federalism because of a faulty political decision and a missed opportunity made by the those who support federalism. First, those who supported federalism did not take action to prevent the emergence of a single state.

It began shortly after independence in 1958, when the main opposition party boycotted national elections to elect members of the national and regional assemblies. In the end, the ruling party was able to win a massive majority of the assembly.

This means that the party in power was able to gather enough votes to disband regional assemblies, after the introduction of a bill for this purpose in the national assembly in the year 1959.

Constitution That Was Adopt

The constitution that was adopt in 1960 declare, for the very first time for the first time, the fact that Ghana was a single state. Another change was the deportation of chiefs as head of regions, as well as their substitution by commissioners for regional areas who were appoint by the president. An opportunity of a lifetime arose to reverse the trend between 1966 and 1969.

The people who orchestrated the coup that swept out Nkrumah at the time of his demise in 1966 had been advocates of the concept of independence prior to autonomous regions. Hence, a new constitution-drafting process was led by those who had called for federalism. But, instead of turning around the trend however, the new leaders remained the status of the game.

The constitution that was propose and approve in 1969 stated the fact that Ghana is a unitary republic and provided no specific designation of regions. The constitution did not reaffirm the original role of regional assemblies or the regional chiefs as regional headmen. The subsequent constitutions have all consolidated Ghana’s status as a unitary state.