General News of Monday, 24 July 2017
The Progressive People’s Party (PPP) says the facts behind the internal wrangling at the Electoral Commission (EC) could be established if a full-scale investigation is undertaken.
The party in a statement Monday said because of the “sensitive” nature of the body, it will not be in the interest of the country if the infighting is allowed to fester.
“We…advise that all the Commissioners must willingly offer to step aside to prepare the grounds for a Commission Of Enquiry to be set up to investigate the allegations and to put the troubling matters to rest,” the statement read.
There is a petition before President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo filed by some workers of the Commission against EC boss, Charlotte Osei.
Allegations raised in the petition range from questions about her managerial competence, political neutrality and what the staff say are breaches of contracts and the public procurement act.
Per the Constitution, the President is expected to forward the petition to the Chief Justice, Sophia Akuffo for a prima facie case to be established in the matter.
Although sections of the public have advised President Akufo-Addo against forwarding the petition which might lead to the impeachment of Mrs Osei, the PPP said it will amount to a Constittional mistake for him to heed the calls.
“Any half hearted efforts by President Akuffo Addo perceived as meant to delay the constitutional course as laid down, will send unwanted signals to the chagrin of law abiding Ghanaians, who feel let down by the rot in which the EC Commissioners themselves have told us they now wallow in.
Read full statement below:
EC COMMISSIONERS MUST STEP ASIDE FOR AN INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATION
The Progressive People’s Party has monitored with dismay the current allegations and counter allegations by the Commissioners of the Electoral Commission of Ghana and find this very worrying.
We…advise that all the Commissioners must willingly offer to step aside to prepare the grounds for a Commission Of Enquiry to be set up to investigate the allegations and to put the troubling matters to rest.
Such a Commission should also be in a position to advise the next steps.
The Electoral Commission is one of the most sensitive institutions in the country and we cannot therefore allow these allegations to fester unduly.
The potential for these to disturb the peace which we are currently enjoying in this country is immense.
We believe the issues raised in the allegations are serious enough to merit further interrogation.
For instances the allegations of unilateral decisions taken by Commissioners in matters involving the future lives of fellow Ghanaians without recourse to the larger Commission is dangerous.
As also matters of financial malfeasance against the public purse by Commissioners cannot surely be overlooked.
The Commissioners should therefore voluntarily step aside or be compelled to step aside in order to begin the process to clean up the quagmire which has apparently now engulfed the Institution charged with the responsibility for ensuring the peaceful transitions and dynamics of our chosen governance systems.
We urge and encourage the President to take due cognizance of what the Constitution allows in these matters (relating to such petitions) and to apply it without fear or favour.No citizen is above the law.
Any half hearted efforts by President Akuffo Addo perceived as meant to delay the constitutional course as laid down, will send unwanted signals to the chagrin of law abiding Ghanaians, who feel let down by the rot in which the EC Commissioners themselves have told us they now wallow in.
We further implore Ghanaians to resist the attempt by the NPP and NDC to politicize this matter. We need to ensure probity and accountability in our public institutions.
The allegations as witnessed by all are not emanating from either the NDC or NPP; but by the workers of the commission and the commissioners themselves.
We cannot therefore afford to trivialize these matters on the altar political victimization.
(PPP, National Secretary)