Mahama: EC appointments regrettable, threatens democracy

 Former President Mahama

Former President Mahama

Former President John Dramani Mahama has described the nomination of four new officials to the Electoral Commission (EC) as a “regrettable” decision by President Nana Akufo-Addo.

According to him, the controversy surrounding the removal of Charlotte Osei and her two deputies, Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku Amankwah and the subsequent appointment of Jean Mensa and three other deputy commissioners, Dr Eric Bossman, Samuel Tetteh and Adwoa Abrefa is a potential threat to Ghana’s democratic credentials.

In a tweet, the former President said the turn of events is regrettable.

“Current controversy surrounding the removal of the EC Chair and deputies and subsequent appointment of new commissioners is regrettable and carries a potential to erode Ghana’s democratic credentials,” former President Mahama bemoaned.

It must, however, be stated that Mrs Mensa had not been in the good books of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

Prior to election 2016, the NDC, which was then the ruling government, boycotted the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) presidential debate, which meant that President John Mahama, who was the NDC’s candidate, did not participate in the national debate.

Some NDC members who were officials of the government, including Deputy Minister of Communications, Felix Kwakye Ofosu, had described her as arrogant following her response to the concerns the NDC raised at the time over the debate.

The NDC had already expressed its dissatisfaction with the nomination of Mrs Mensa saying she’s anti-NDC.

The party in a statement said it would in due course provide details of what it calls “open and covert activities of Mrs Mensa which makes her unfit to occupy the high position of Chairperson of the EC”.

Last month, President Akufo-Addo removed the Chairperson of the EC, Mrs Osei and her two deputies, Mr Sulley and Mrs Amankwah from office.

This was after a committee set up by the Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo, pursuant to Article 146(4) of the Constitution, investigated separate complaints of procurement breaches and financial malfeasance brought against the three persons by some Ghanaian citizens including staff of the E C.

The committee recommended their removal on the basis of stated misbehaviour and incompetence, pursuant to Article 146 (1) of the constitution.
On July 23, 2018, the Presidency announced the nomination of the Executive Director of IEA, Mrs Mensa as the new Chairperson of the EC.

Other persons nominated for appointment by President Akufo-Addo to the Commission included Mr Tetteh for Deputy Chairperson, Dr. Bossman also a Deputy Chairperson and Adwoa Abrefa as a member of Commission. –

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