General News of Saturday, 10 September 2016
The flagbearer of the Convention People’s Party (CPP), Ivor Kobina Greenstreet has warned that the party would not be contesting the 2016 general elections if the Electoral Commission (EC) fails to reduce the filing fees.
The EC after an IPAC meeting announced that persons seeking to contest as Presidential candidates will be paying GHC50, 000 as filing fee. This represents a 500 per cent increment in the amount.
Those contesting the Parliamentary election will also have to pay GHC10,000 as against the Gh¢1,000 paid in the last elections. The new figure is a 1,000 per cent increment from the previous amount.
Majority of the parties, especially the smaller ones have protested the figure, claiming it’s a ploy to disqualify them from contesting in the upcoming December 7 elections.
People’s National Convention (PNC) Chairman, Bernard Mornah said the price tag amounted to an “auctioning Ghana’s democracy”.
“All of us fought and ensured that government releases monies and in fact 90 percent has been released to you for your work so the EC doesn’t need filing fees from any quarters to augment their work” the CPP leader fumed on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen.
The General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia described as unnecessary the hullabaloo that has characterized the announcement of filing fees by the Electoral Commission (EC) for both parliamentary and presidential candidates contesting the December 7 polls.
According to Johnson Asiedu Nketia, the GH? 50,000 for presidential candidates and GH?10,000 for parliamentary candidates are ‘peanuts’ as compared to what is charged by political parties in their internal contests.
“The EC is just holding the money in trust to ensure political parties are committed to the process but they will refund it if you get 15 percent of the total votes cast. We in the NDC have been benefitting and it helps us run our activities” he said.
Commenting on this, Ivor Greenstreet said the CPP would be considering backing out of the elections if the amount is not reduced.
We don’t have GHc 2millio and more to pay and that EC should do something about it…,” he told Adom FM’s Kofi Adomah in an interview.
He said the amount will also affect various smaller parties.