The Electoral Commission Chairperson, Charlotte Osei, has defended the decision of the election management body to accept the filing fee of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), despite an interlocutory injunction by the party, that has forced the Commission to decline the filing fee of all other nominees who presented their nomination forms.
The PPP filed a suit at the High Court on September 19, seeking an interlocutory injunction to prevent the Commission from receiving the nominations in protest of the EC’s much criticized filing fees for presidential and parliamentary aspirants.
On Thursday, the EC said it would not be accepting filing fees from the presidential and parliamentary aspirants untile the court rules on the substance matter in court.
But the EC accepted the filing fee of the PPP flagbearer, Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, who was represented by the party’s Chairman, Nii Allotey Brew Hammond, at it’s headquarters on Friday.
Mr. Hammond subsequently requested that the filing fee be returned to them, but the EC Chair, Charlotte Osei, said it was too late to return the fee, as the PPP was aware of the legal implications, yet went ahead to present the fee in bank draft form.
Addressing the media after the exercise, Madam Charlotte Osei explained that, the Commission accepted the filing fee of the PPP because they assumed the party was no longer interested in pursuing the case in court.
“By presenting it; I thought they had withdrawn the case, that was the impression,” she said.
The EC opened nominations earlier in September, and pegged the filing fees for presidential hopefuls at GHc 50,000, and that of parliamentary nominees at GHc 10,000.
Some aggrieved parties subsequently asked the EC to review the amount describing it as “exorbitant.”
The Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom-led PPP, followed its concerns with a lawsuit, seeking an injunction to prevent the EC from receiving the nominations until the matter is determined.
It remains to be seen in court, what the impact of today’s incident, will have on the substantive case in court.
By: Marian Ansah/citifmonline.com/Ghana