Mahama’s election bid hit with suit

A Ghanaian businessman is challenging the eligibility of former President John Mahama to stand for presidential elections in Ghana.

Stephen Agyeman is praying the High Court to declare that Mr Mahama, in raising funds to support his bid to be elected as a flagbearer/presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in his capacity as a former President of the Republic of Ghana violates Article 68 (2) of the 1992 Constitution.

He also seeks a declaration that the defendant in raising funds to support his bid to be elected as a flagbearer/presidential candidate of the NDC in his capacity as a former President of the Republic of Ghana, without the permission of Parliament, had contravened Article 68 (2) of the 1992 Constitution.

He is further praying the court to hold that former President Mahama’s establishment of a campaign office for the purpose of seeking to coordinate his activities in his quest to become flagbearer/presidential candidate of the NDC constitutes an office of emolument or profit within the context of Article 68 (2) of the 1992 Constitution and same having been established without Parliamentary permission was in contravention of Article 68 (2) of the 1992 Constitution.

Another declaration he seeks is that pursuant to Articles 66 (1) and 66 (2) of the 1992 Constitution, the defendant was not qualified as a candidate to stand for re-election as President of the Republic of Ghana on the ticket of the NDC is also being sought by the plaintiff.

Emoluments

A declaration that the defendant’s act of seeking to be elected presidential candidate of the NDC was in breach of Article 66 (1) and 66 (2) of the 1992 Constitution on account of the fact that the defendant had had the benefits and emoluments of an ex-president twice and thus a third attempt was in violation of the letter and spirit of Article 66 (1) and 66 (2) of the 1992 Constitution.

Additionally, the plaintiff wants the court to declare that pursuant to Articles 68 (2), 68 (3), 68 (4), 68 (5), 68 (7) and 68 (9) of the 1992 Constitution, the former President Mahama cannot purport to seek re-election as President of the Republic of Ghana.

A legal practitioner, Mr Simon Okyere filed the writ of summons on behalf of the plaintiff in Accra on Friday, February 15, 2019.

Statement of Claim

According to the statement of claim accompanying the writ of summons, the plaintiff was a citizen of Ghana seeking to protect the constitution of the Republic.

It said the defendant left office as President of the Republic following his defeat as President during the 2016 polls.

The plaintiff is arguing that the defendant upon leaving office after losing the 2016 presidential election to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, began to enjoy all the privileges and courtesies of a former President pursuant to Article 68 (4) of the 1992 Constitution.

The statement of claim said the defendant filed his nomination papers to contest the presidential primaries of the NDC to be elected as its presidential candidate to contest the national presidential elections in the year 2020.

According to the plaintiff, the defendant in furtherance of his ambition to be elected as the presidential candidate of the NDC “has established a campaign team with a campaign office for his personal gain, advantage, profit, or benefit of becoming the presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) for the 2020 presidential elections.”

 

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