President Akufo-Addo presenting nominations forms to EC Boss, Jean Mensa
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo yesterday showed he was ‘battle-ready’ for the December 7, 2020 Presidential Election, which will see him going for a second term, when he filed his nomination at the Electoral Commission (EC).
The President was at the EC Head Office in Accra accompanied by his Vice Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, New Patriotic Party (NPP) Chairman Freddy W. Blay, Chief of Staff Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, Campaign Chairman Peter Mac Manu, General Secretary John Boadu, National Organizer Sammi Awuku and a host of other NPP stalwarts.
His nomination forms, accompanied with a filing fee of GH¢100,000 in banker’s draft, were received by Jean Mensa, who is the Returning Officer for the Presidential Election.
The President entered the EC premises around 11 a.m. yesterday but by the time he got there, scores of enthusiastic NPP supporters had gathered around the venue to welcome him, with some getting there as early as 8 a.m.
The security had a torrid time clearing the area for safe passage of the President as everybody wanted to catch a glimpse of him and his entourage and be part of the historic occasion.
Nana Akufo-Addo, who became the first President to file nomination for re-election in person, told the EC officials that “I am not interested in any crooked results. I don’t want to be a President elected by deceit. I look forward to a contest that will be fairly conducted so that if indeed by the grace of the Almighty, I am again the choice of the Ghanaian people, it will be one that will be free and open elections.”
“What the Ghanaian people are expecting is that the election of December will be an election that will be conducted in peace, in freedom, in security and in transparency so that the results of the elections will reflect the will of the Ghanaian people,” he added.
He told the EC that “elections are not meant to be decided by you, or the officials that work for you. You are the referees in the contest. We are counting on you to be the arbiter and to hold the scales evenly to all contestants.”
The President noted, “So far, the work that you have done has given considerable confidence to the majority of people in our country that in you and in the leadership of the Electoral Commission, we have people who are committed to a free, fair, credible and transparent process.”
“We hope that will mark the conduct of the elections of 7th December. I want to thank you very much for the opportunity this morning and what we all pray for is that may the best man win,” he added.
Later the EC boss said the Commission had set up two teams, namely IT and Technical, to audit the nomination forms of all presidential aspirants seeking to contest in the 2020 polls.
“As part of our efforts to ensure a transparent and fair and yet accountable process, the Commission has developed a criterion that enables candidates to be vetted along with benchmarks set up by law. The template is also aimed at guiding our team which will be awarding marks after scrutinizing and reviewing each of the forms. It is important to know that the Commission has set up two teams,” she pointed out.
She further outlined the roles of each of the teams, saying “the technical team will scrutinize the forms and ensure that candidates meet the qualifications as set out in the law, namely, that the presidential candidates are 40 years old and have satisfied all tax obligations, among others. And an IT team that will check and verify whether candidates and supporters are indeed registered voters. The teams are to operate within the confines and law and not to exercise discretion. They have been tasked to be fair.”
By Charles Takyi-Boadu