Akufo-Addo Accused of Packing EC with NPP Members But Party Stalwart Sees Nothing Wrong: "It's Constitutional"
- Nana Akufo-Addo is receiving the flak for appointing a known NPP communicator to the EC, the country's sole elections management body
- According to the NDC, the move is bad and a slap in the face of Ghana's progressive democratic dispensation
- However, a stalwart of the party and a lawyer, Nana Obiri Boahen, has said the president has not breached the constitution and advised critics to blame the current provisions of the constitution that allows the president to make such appointments
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President Nana Akufo-Addo has been criticised for appointing a known member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) as one of the members of the Electoral Commission (EC).
Members of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) who followed the inauguration of the three members of the EC on Monday, March 20, 2023, at the Jubilee House said the move is a slap in the face of Ghana's democracy.
NDC lawmaker for Buem, Kofi Adams, for instance, identified one of the three appointees as a member of the communication team of the governing NPP in the Bono Region.
“Clearly, there is everything wrong with the persons the president has appointed. The President has appointed known activists of the NPP,” he told 3 News on Tuesday.
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Akufo-Addo appoints three new members of the EC
At a brief ceremony at the Jubilee House on Monday, President Akufo-Addo swore in the three new members of the national elections management body.
The three members are as follows:
- Dr Peter Appiahene,
- Salima Ahmed Tijani, and
- Reverend Akua Ofori Boateng.
The new appointments come less than one year before the 2024 general elections which experts predict could be the most crucial in Ghana's democratic history.
Peter Appiahene is a known NPP man
According to Kofi Adams, Dr Appiahene was once a member of the NPP's communications team in the Bono Region. Adams fears the appointment is a major aberration in Ghana's political history.
“Dr Peter Appiahene is a known NPP activist in the Bono Region, he is a member of the NPP communications team in the Bono region...we saw the appointments of Bossman Asares and the Jean Mensas," Adams was livid.
Akufo-Addo has done nothing wrong - Obiri Boahen
However, reacting to the criticism of the president, a stalwart of the governing party and a former deputy General Secretary of the NPP, Nana Obiri Boahen, said there is nothing wrong with the appointment of Dr Appiahene to the EC membership.
He told YEN.com.gh in an exclusive comment that granted that Dr Appiahene is a former NPP communicator, the law does not bar the president from appointment people with competence to work for the EC.
"The president is even being charitable. If I were the president I would appoint more NPP people to the EC. See, until the constitution says the president cannot make such an appointment then the critics should stop talking," the defended the appointment.
He said until the recommendations of the Constitutional Review Committee about limiting the appointing powers of the president have been implemented, critics can "sing the song about conflict of interest somewhere else."
"What are they talking about? Are we in a church here? What has the president done wrong? Was Asiedu Nketia [NDC Chairman] not a known member of the opposition NDC when he was appointed to serve on the Parliament Board?" he quizzed.
He said the 1992 Constitution provides for the president to make such an appointment to the EC but did not state that the president must not appoint a person with a known political affiliation.
He told YEN.com.gh that appointing people deemed affiliated to a particular political party in any democratic dispensation is inevitable but so far as the practice does not breach the constitution, critics must hold their peace and tackle it from the perspective of what is lawful and unlawful.
He said he was looking forward to an appointment from the president because he is competent and has served the party loyally.
Kejetia market fire victims receive GH¢100,000 donation from NPP
Meanwhile, YEN.com.gh has reported that the NPP has donated money to support victims of the Kejetia Market fire that hit last week.
The party, led by General Secretary Justin Kodua, donated GH¢100,000 on March 20, 2023.
He also promised that the governing party would ensure that more help from state authorities gets extended to the victims of the fire.
Vice president Dr Mahamudu Bawumia also pledged the government's support to the victims of the fire.
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