General News of Wed, 25 Jul 201823
Advise Akufo-Addo to reverse ‘risky’ EC Chair nomination – DYMOG to Council of State
A youth-oriented group, the Dynamic Youth Movement of Ghana (DYMOG), is urging the Council of State to impress on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to reverse the nomination of Jean Adukwei Mensa as the new chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC).
It argued though the nomination by the President was done within the confines of the constitution, it threatens the country’s democracy, peace and stability considering the issues surrounding the removal of Mrs Charlotte Osei.
The group held that the action by Nana Akufo-Addo is too risky especially so as there are cases challenging the processes and eventual removal of Mrs. Osei and her two deputies as commissioners of the EC.
President Akufo-Addo on July 23 named Mrs. Mensa as the new EC chairperson to replace Mrs. Osei who was removed from office on June 28, 2018 on grounds of “stated misbehaviour and incompetence”.
He also named Samuel Tettey who is currently the Director of Electoral Services and Dr. Eric Asare Bossman who is the head of the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana as members of the Commission.
They are to replace Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku Amankwa who were removed along with Mrs Charlotte Osei on the same grounds of misbehaviour and incompetence.
Their removal was on the back of recommendations from a committee set up by the Chief Justice to investigate the three on allegations brought against them by some staff of the Commission in July 2017.
Per Article 70(2), President Akufo-Addo has since July 19 written to the Council of State to advice him on the nominations which also saw Adwoa Asuama Abrefa being named as a member of the EC.
“Taking a snapshot at the issues surrounding the removal of the former EC Chairperson, considering the legal issues raised by private citizens challenging the legality of her removal, the application for an injunction to prevent the President from appointing new EC officials and now the swift move by the President to nominate new officials, DYMOG is of the firm believe Ghana’s democracy, Peace and Stability are ‘highly at risk’ if issues surrounding the electoral commission, appointment of its members and activities are not managed properly going forward” it said in a statement Tuesday.
According to DYMOG, the President’s action could prejudice the cases which are before the Supreme Court contending it may amount to pressure on the judges in giving their verdict.
“It would therefore have been expedient if the President had waited for the conclusive determination of the suits before putting out names for consideration,” it observed.