Communications Minister says the powers of the Electoral Commission (EC) has not been undermined, although the High Court has quashed the disqualification of the Progressive People Party’s (PPP) presidential aspirant.
In Dr Omane Boamah’s view, the court by its action has only consolidated and classified the powers of the EC.
Speaking on Joy FM/MultiTVs’ news analysis programme, Newsfile, the Minister indicated that the court only sought to tell the petitioner, Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom that, “I do not have the power to indicate how the EC should go about its job in terms of what you are asking for".
“So basically, it is saying that the EC should give you [Dr Nduom] the opportunity and go through the processes that he would have gone through. So the power of the EC is clearly appreciated even per the ruling,” he added.
Dr Nduom’s hope of contesting this year’s presidential elections was almost dashed when the EC disqualified him together with 12 other aspirants following some discrepancies on their nomination forms.
In Dr Nduom’s case, the EC said one of his 432 subscribers, Richard Aseda, endorsed the nomination papers in two separate districts in the Central and Volta Regions.
The businessman argued he was unfairly treated because the error could easily be corrected, but his appeals to the EC Chairperson, Mrs Charlotte Osei to have him correct those errors yielded no results.
He proceeded to court and in the court's October 28 ruling, presiding judge, Justice Eric Kyei Baffuor instructed the Commission to give Dr Nduom an opportunity to correct the errors on his nomination papers.
Related: Read full judgement: EC should have allowed Nduom to correct mistakes
According to the judge, the EC did not adhere to their own regulations spelt out in the Constitutional Instrument (CI 94).
Some people following the ruling have questioned the competence of the EC Chairperson Charlotte Osei.
Related: Nduom’s win not hope for other disqualified candidates – lawyer
Counsel for the petitioner, Ayikoi Otoo said the EC Chair only demonstrated her inexperience when she disqualified his client.
But Dr Boamah says it is erroneous and “it will not serve the interest of anyone to caricature the EC in the manner in which people are seeking to do.”
In a response to what this means for the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) since it is likely that Dr Nduom will be on the ballot paper on December 7, Dr Omane Boamah said his party is not perturbed.
He is confident that regardless of who is or isn’t in the race, the NDC is marching on to victory in December.
“For us in NDC we have contested some of these candidates over and over. We know their strengths and how they are competing. We are ready to contest the elections and we are going ahead with our campaign.”
He assured that government will continue to provide the necessary support for all stakeholders involved in the electioneering process to ensure that the polls go on smoothly.