The Supreme Court has thrown out an application seeking to place an injunction on the President from appointing a new Electoral Commissioner following the sacking of Mrs. Charlotte Osei.
The plaintiff, Fafali Nyonator argued that the President be prevented from continuing with the process of appointing a new EC until an earlier suit challenging the legality of the process used to dismiss Charlotte Osei and her deputies is determined.
However, the seven member panel at the Supreme Court disallowed the injunction application; stating that Article 2 clause 2 of the 1992 Constitution makes available remedies for a reinstatement if the court does find the removal of Charlotte Osei unconstitutional.
-(2) The Supreme Court shall, for the purposes of a declaration under clause (1) of this article, make such orders and give such directions as it may consider appropriate for giving effect, or enabling effect to be given, to the declaration so made.-
Speaking to the media after the ruling, Deputy Attorney General, Godfred Dame said President Nana Akufo-Addo is likely to appoint a New EC in 24 hours after his nomination of Jean Mensa and two others was approved by the Council of State.
“The way has been paved for the appointment of the Electoral Commissioner formally and the swearing in to take place and I believe the President will act in accordance to today’s ruling, which means there is no impediment in his way. I am sure he’s going to appoint them in the next 24 hours or so,” Mr Dame told Joy News’ Kwesi Parker Wilson Tuesday.
Charlotte Osei and her two deputies; Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku Amankwa suffered an unprecedented impeachment after a judicial committee set up by the Chief Justice in accordance with Article 146 of the Constitution found them guilty of procurement breaches and recommended their removal.
The state has since been divided on issues relating to the matter with the biggest opposition party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) maintaining that the impeachment is politically motivated.
The NDC had planned to stage a massive demonstration barely 15 hours after the announcement but the untimely demise of former Vice President, Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur made them suspend the demonstration.
Charlotte Osei herself noted that she will deal with her impeachment after the burial of Mr Amissah-Arthur.
Opposition to new nominees
The NDC has registered their opposition to President Akufo-Addo’s nomination of Jean Mensa as EC boss.
The party argued that the head of Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) is politically biased, and her handling of the Presidential debates forced them to boycott the debate in 2016 so she cannot be trusted as a referee in Ghana’s elections.
“…so we are saying that if she occupies this position she would not be neutral and she would not be apolitical,” MP for South Dayi Rockson Dafeamekpor told Joy News TV.
The party is also opposed to the nominee for the deputy position, Dr Bossman Asare who is currently the head of the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana.
They argue that his analysis of issues and public statements are skewed towards the New Patriotic Party hence their criticism of him.
“…we have analyzed public statements attributable to him damming NDC and favouring the NPP,” Mr Dafeamekpor said.
Civil Society Groups like IMANI Africa have however, lauded the President’s choice of the new EC.
“She understands exactly what should happen at the EC,” IMANI President Franklin Cudjoe told Joy FM.
President Akufo-Addo has however, been criticised for not broadly consulting stakeholders before nominating the new commissioners, something he called for when he was in opposition.