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EC struggling to regulate political parties, take away that function – Majority Leader urges

Chair of the EC, first from right and her deputies

Majority Leader in Parliament, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu has said the power given to the Electoral Commission (EC) to regulate political parties in Ghana must be reviewed.

He suggested that the mandate should be taken from the elections management and be given to another body that will be solely responsible for the regulation of the parties.

Addressing the press in Accra on Wednesday December 15 he said it appears the EC has not been able to deliver that particular functions properly, hence the call for the withdrawal of the mandate.

The Suame lawmaker said “There must be a state-funding of political parties with clearly defined modalities for its implementation, strengthen the internal political parties mechanisms, the need for consistent public education on the ill-effect of monetisation of politics on national development.

“The mandate of the Electoral Commission must be reviewed and a different institution established to be solely responsible for the regulation of political parties.

“The EC is charged with the conduct of elections but the regulation of political parties is something that has become difficult for Electoral Commission. Perhaps the time has come to assign another institution with that responsibility.

“The law provides that if you don’t exist in two thirds of the districts in this country you don’t have to be registered as a political party.”

The Minister for Parliamentary Affairs added “The EC without recourse to this provision in the constitution would usually give them a provisional certificate.

“When they don’t exist in two thirds of the districts we should be religious about that and once we are able to do this the multiplicity of political parties that we have in the system, more than 32 or so registered political parties yet we know that in terms of ideology there can only be two political parties.

“You either belong to the left or you belong to the right. The directive principles of state policy which has defined the broad goal of development for us as a nation compels all political parties to belong to the centre.

“So in spite of ourselves, I belong to the NPP and we are a liberal party, the rightist liberal party, the NDC is pride of themselves also belong just a little bit of the left to the Centre.”

Source:3 News

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Elections

Ajumako: Journalist attacked for filming altercation at NPP constituency election

Police

The Ajumako Police Command is investigating a case of assault on a reporter of the Ghana News Agency, Mr. Prince Acquah, by a mob for filming an altercation during the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Ajumako-Enyan-Essiam Constituency executive election.

The altercation, which nearly marred the otherwise peaceful election at the Ajumako Campus of the University of Education, was over monies shared to the delegates for transportation.

They alleged they were “robbed” by some party executives who gave them GH¢20.00 instead of the GH¢50.00 communicated to them through a memo.

Mr. Acquah said he was recording the incident as part of his report on the election when some of the people saw him and accosted him.

His explanation of being a journalist with the GNA did not stop them from molesting him as they shoved him around in an attempt to seize his phone, but he resisted.

Mr. Acquah told the police that he was accused of being an agent of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), who had infiltrated the ranks of the NPP to “destroy the party.”

“I have never met some of the attackers, but they insisted they knew me as a member of the NDC from the constituency and that my only mission there was to destroy the NPP,” he said.

“Like a criminal, I was pushed down again and landed on an anthill and had minor bruises on my left ankle,” he told this reporter.

The timely intervention by Mr. Jonathan Addo, a former Coordinator, Mr. Isaac Fosu, the Ajumako-Enyan-Essiam Coordinator of the NPP, and some police officers on duty at the election centre saved the situation, Mr. Acquah said.

The police had to delete the video of the incident from his phone before the crowd would disperse, he said, and that the phone was later handed over to him and he left the centre without covering the elections.

He was given a police form to seek medical treatment.

Source: gna.org.gh

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Elections

2024 Polls: Mahama Is A Renewed Person, Will Make A Better President – Haruna Iddrisu

Haruna Iddrisu

Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, has said that former President John Dramani Mahama is a renewed person competent to solve some of the challenges confronting the country when he becomes president again.

According to the legislator, Mr. Mahama has had the opportunity of serving as president and thus has the experience and knowledge to better steer the affairs of the country.

In an interview with Accra-based GH One TV, the Tamale South MP indicated that Mr. Mahama will make a better president.

He consequently charged the opposition National Democratic Congress to rally behind the former president as it heads into the next elections.

Haruna Iddrisu made the comments while evading commentary on rumours of his presidential ambitions.

“I have heard that and I have many commentaries and as I have indicated strongly, we need a front and we unite around President John Dramani Mahama as he then was to see how he recaptures power for the good of the Ghanaian people and to continue some of his worthy initiatives.

“What Ghanaians need to understand is upon hindsight President Mahama will make a better president having appreciated some of his own weaknesses and strengths while ruling…some challenges that obviously he could not deal with and some that today sitting back and observing and watching he’s in a better position to be able to fix many of those problems.

“So, he comes to a renewed person better prepared than he was before because he now has the benefit of hindsight…whiles in office, outside office…this is the way to go. And I think that the party should unite around him,” he said.

Haruna Iddrisu further urged the NDC to allow democratic processes to prevail in the lead up to the party’s internal contest.

He said that everyone who wishes to contest the former president for the flagbearership slot should be allowed to do so.

He however indicated that Mr. Mahama stood tall in terms of popularity.

“Nobody should close any door or any window or opportunity to any other person. We are a party of opportunity.

“The NDC gives opportunity to young people and therefore those who are desirous of running against him must be given fair and equitable opportunity and platform consistent with Article 55 of the 1992 Constitution where we must run the party to reflect democratic values and ethos.

“I believe that in terms of popularity, he is 90% ahead of those wanting to run against him and maybe they will run to share some 10% if he finally makes a declaration as I believe he has done,” Haruna Iddrisu added.

The NDC recently released a roadmap for the party’s internal elections.

Amongst many things, it has slated November this year to elect its flagbearer for the 2024 elections.

Source: ghanaweb.com

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Elections

EC boss, deputies run to Supreme Court over petition demanding their removal

Jean Mensa

The Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), Jean Mensa and her deputies –Dr. Eric Bossman Asare and Mr. Samuel Tettey– have run to the Supreme Court, over a petition by the #FixTheCountry Movement demanding their removal from office.

It comes on the back of the movement’s petition to the President to have the leadership of the electoral management body relieved of their post over the inability of the residents of Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe (SALL) to vote for a representative in Parliament.

Joined to the suit as first, second and third defendants are: Convener of the  #FixTheCountry Movement, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, the Chief Justice and Attorney General.

The pressure group petitioned the President to remove from office the EC Chair and her deputies following the inability of the people of SALL to vote in the 2020 parliamentary election.

The #FixTheCountry movement contends that the conduct of the EC officials in the matter “meets the threshold of stated misbehaviour and, or incompetence as required under Article 146 of the 1992 Constitution for the removal of these officials”.

The petitioners say the actions and inaction of Madam Jean Mensa caused the people to lose their fundamental human rights.

There are 46 signatories to the petition, including residents of SALL.

“The Petitioners have faith that the normal constitutional processes contemplated by the Constitution to avenge infractions against it and our democracy will be upheld without fear nor favour; and that their standing as mere citizens of this Republic does not disable them from obtaining justice, in the preserve of our Constitution”, the group has said.

But the Chair of the EC and her two deputies in the writ asked the court to declare the action by the pressure group as unconstitutional.

The EC boss and her deputies among other things, want the Supreme Court to stop the movement from pushing through the petition.

Below are the reliefs sought by the EC leadership:

  1. A declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of article 146(8)of the Constitution 1992, 1st defendant’s publication in the media (traditional and social) of the contents of Petitioners’ Petition to His Excellency, The President of the Republic., for the removal of 1st, 2nd & 3rd plaintiffs from office for stated misbehaviour and incompetence sins against article 146(8) of the Constitution 1992, and to that extent unconstitutional.
  2. A declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of article 146(8) of the Constitution 1992, 2nd defendant is precluded from establishing a prima facie case or otherwise arising out of the contents of the said Petition lodged by the Petitioners.
  3. A declaration that the airing of the contents of the Petition by 1 defendant to the media (traditional and social) has subjected 1st, 2nd& 3rd plaintiffs to public ridicule, hatred, odium and opprobrium and equally exposed them to unfair prejudice.
  4. An order of perpetual injunction directed against 2nd defendant from determining, dealing, or having anything to do in any manner whatsoever and/or howsoever, with any issues arising out of the contents of Petitioners Petition or at all.
  5. Any further orders and/or directions as this Honourable Court may deem fit to give effect or enable effect to be given to the orders of this court.

Background

Currently, SALL, which is in the Guan district, has no representation in Parliament after contentions over its inclusion in the Oti Region following its creation.

Some residents of Akpafu, then in the Hohoe Municipality, even boycotted the referendum that endorsed the creation of the Oti Region.

Oliver Barker-Vormawor, complained about the lack of transparency from the EC since the 2020 election.

“For over a year now, there has been no attempt to give clarity to why such grievous harm was done to our constitution,” he said.

Mr. Barker-Vormawor further said the actions of his group were meant to safeguard Ghana’s constitution.

“Our commitment is to restore the constitution and ensure that the constitution continues to survive when it is under attack by persons as high as persons occupying the Office of the Electoral Commission.”

Source: Citinewsroom.com

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