President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo followed due process in removing the EC Chairperson, Charlotte Osei and her two deputies, government’s Spokesperson on Governance and Legal Affairs, Herbert Krapa has said.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) had criticized the Akufo Addo government over the move, saying it was an attempt by the Akufo-Addo government to rig the 2020 elections.
The NDC National Organiser, Kofi Adams told the press on Thursday night it was clear Ghanaians were fed up with the current New Patriotic Party (NPP) government.
“They [NPP] have failed already. Ghanaians, everywhere you pass, are saying, for this government, we will see its back in 2020.”
“…So the attempt and the fear, for which reason, they have set out to remove an arbiter of our elections and the two deputies so as to allow them to continue their rigging machinery. Ghanaians will not allow that to happen,” Kofi Adams had said.
Responding to these concerns, Herbert Krapa said the President acted in accordance with law.
“If anybody has evidence to show that some procurement laws have been breached or flouted, I think they have the right to go to court or do whatever they have to do within the law. This is a specific constitutional process and the President duly followed the process” Herbert Krapa said on Citi FM’s news analysis programme, The Big Issue.
The removal of Charlotte Osei and her two deputies, Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku Amankwah from office followed a recommendation from a Committee set up by the Chief Justice.
The Chief Justice set up the committee to probe multiple complaints against the EC officials.
Allegations of procurement breaches and malfeasance were brought against them, following which the Chief Justice established a prima facie case against them.
The committee cited misbehaviour and incompetence as reasons for the dismissal, pursuant to Article 146(4) of the Constitution.
Charlotte Osei breached procurement laws
The Committee concluded that Charlotte Osei blatantly breached procurement laws in the award of several contracts in her three-year period at the helm of affairs, prior to the 2016 elections.
Excerpts of the report released by the government and made available to Citi News says the committee investigated six separate allegations of various procurement breaches, for which a prima facie case was established against Madam Charlotte Osei.
A statement by a Minister for Information, Mustapha Abdul-Hamid on Thursday, said the President had directed the three persons to hand over their respective schedules to the Director of Human Resources at the Commission while thanking them for their service to the country.
Removal not politically motivated
The government has stressed that the shake-up at the EC was not politically motivated.
The Director of Communications at the presidency, Eugene Arhin, said the President acted strictly according to the recommendations of the committee set up by the Chief Justice.
“Those critics will be completely off the mark. When this matter first broke our, we heard the two deputies were virtually against the chairperson herself. You heard the allegations they made. These persons who petitioned the president against Charlotte Osei were persons who worked at the Commission.”