As Ghana prepares to hold its seventh presidential and parliamentary elections, many pundits have revisited the debate about how MPs fund their constituency campaigns and what drives the costs of their political activities and programmes while in office. The existing literature indicates that MPs in countries such as Ghana finance their constituency campaigns from personal resources, and incumbents affiliated to the ruling party enjoy state sponsorship that feed off neopatrimonial ties.
As a result, recent public discourses on political financing in Ghana show a growing concern about the influence of money in the body politic including the financial burden imposed on MPs by their constituents. Given the vigorous national debate on campaign finance and political corruption, this background paper attempts to interrogate how Members of Parliament (MPs) have funded constituency primaries and parliamentary elections. It also seeks to examine the nature of financial demands imposed on MPs by their constituents and how MPs have responded to constituency financial demands while in office, and concludes by analysing the ramifications for Ghana’s democratic development.