Mrs. Jean Mensa is the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission of Ghana. She is a Barrister at Law and a leader of thought in Ghana on governance and democratic issues. She is experienced in economic and political policy development in Ghana and a longtime champion for equity and the rule of law. Prior to assuming the role of Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, she led the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) as Executive Director, playing a pivotal role in strengthening Ghana’s democracy and promoting strong institutions.
For two decades, Mrs. Mensa has been a leader in policy research and advocacy. Her specialization has been developing and implementing policy alternatives that reflect international best practice but are also tailored to Ghana’s needs. She has built and maintained relationships with key organizations in government, academia, development partners, media and civil society actors irrespective of political ideology or leanings. Mrs. Mensa has institutionalized the practice of engaging successive governments, which enabled the Institute to maintain strong professional relationships with each government, while providing constructive independent critique as well as support to their efforts at fostering growth and development of the economy.
Key among her achievements are her contributions to the creation of The Chairmen’s Caucus and The Platform of General Secretaries and Policy Analysts, and her roles as Coordinator of the Ghana Political Parties Programme, and Convener of the West African Regional Political Parties Program. These Platforms bring together the leadership of Political Parties in Ghana and West Africa to dialogue and reach consensus on pertinent issues confronting their respective countries.
Mrs. Mensa’s long record of promoting national unity and cohesion include facilitating the IEA’s Evening Encounter Series, Ghana’s first troika of public Presidential and Vice-Presidential Debates, as well as Town Hall Meetings. These events not only bolstered accountability and transparency of the political process but also allowed an interface between Presidential Candidates and their constituents.
Mrs Mensa facilitated the Institute’s promotion of electoral reform, leading key stakeholders in a review of the 2012 Presidential and Parliamentary elections. A report produced on the conduct and outcome of the elections, recommended urgent reforms of Ghana’s electoral system. Under her leadership, the Institute was also invited by the Electoral Commission to facilitate its own process of electoral reform. Several of the reforms recommended by the IEA were implemented by the Electoral Commission ahead of the 2016 Election.
In the area of the development of policy and law, Mrs. Jean Mensa has facilitated and participated in research and advocacy efforts that led to the development of policy documents and bills, several of which have been passed into Law. These include the Presidential (Transition) Act, Act 845,The Whistle Blowers Act, Act 720, The Right to Information Bill, The Political Parties Funding Bill, The Political Parties Bill, The Political Parties’ Code of Conduct of 2008 and 2012 and The Democracy Consolidation Strategy Paper of 2008. She is also a tireless campaigner for the review of Ghana’s 1992 Republican Constitution and served as a member of the Constitution Review Commission.Mrs. Jean Mensa