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Monday, January 17, 2022

I shudder to think what NDC will do if they win and Jean Mensa is in office – Senyo Hosi

John Mahama and Jean Mensa

There must be a change in the mode of appointing Commissioners to the Electoral Commission (EC) and also the Chair, a Policy analyst, Mr Senyo Hosi, has said.

He described the current modus operandi as a poor way of appointing the Commissioners and added that it does not augur well for the stability of the democracy.

He said these while speaking at the 2022 Constitution Day Public Lecture on the topic: “Avoiding the impending Death of the 1992 Constitution” which was organized by the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) law school on Friday, January 14.

Tabling a number of amendments that need to be done to the 1992 constitution, Mr Hosi said “With the legislature, we need to expunge any requirement for the executive to appoint any member of the legislature.

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“There should be no option at all, as a minister or member of board and enterprises or agencies of the state. You can’t be a player and a referee at the same time, stay in your lane.

“The next one we have to work on is the judiciary. To entrench the independence of the judiciary from the executive, the authority to appoint members of the Judicial Council from the lower court must remain the preserve of the Judicial Council. We should be required to adopt an open and public evaluation process.

“The nomination to Supreme Court and for the Chief Justice should equally emanate from the Judicial Council but subject to the approval of two-thirds of members in Parliament, they have to agree and own the confidence in our supreme court judges.

“This will disincentivise political activism, a situation that is eroding confidence in the judiciary and the very core values – freedom and justice – we don’t need judges to want to catch the eyes of any president anymore. That also requires that we have a revision to the constitution of the judicial council itself.

“We need to create rooms for the opposition to also have nominations on this council, it is a centre of our democracy.”

He added “The next is depoliticization of our governance and democratic institutions, it a very interesting one. These include National Commission on Civic Education, Electoral Commission and the National Media Commission. They are core to the sustenance of our democracy. The management of the appointment of the Electoral Commission has been, in recent times, fraught with so much mistrust and political colourization.

“The poor consultative process in the appointment of Charlotte Osei and the infamous manoeuvring to oust her and the equally no consensual process in appointing Jean Mensa do not augur well for our democratic stability. I shudder to think of what the NDC will do should they assume office with Jean Mensa in office.

“This tells us that the system is sick and it is not working for we the people. So I recommend a more consensual process that has still the president nominate the commissioners for approval by Parliament by a two-thirds Majority.

“I also believe our constitution to demand the president to adopt a public process requiring a recruitment process that includes interested persons to apply.”

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