Thursday, September 16, 2021

Assin North seat: Appeal is in order- NDC Activist

An NDC Activist, Lawyer John Owusu Agyeman, says it is in order for the NDC to apply for an appeal on the judgement of the Assin North Mp’s case.

According to him, he is not surprised the leadership of the NDC has opted o file an appeal because the law allows for an appeal if a party does not agree with the judgement.

A Cape Coast High Court nullified the 2020 parliamentary results in the Assin North constituency in the Central Region.

The Court presided over by Justice Kwasi Boakye ordered for fresh elections to be conducted in the constituency.

The court has also restrained the Assin North MP, Mr Joe Gyaakye Quayson from holding himself as the MP for the Assin North Constituency.

Read Also: NDC loses Assin North seat as Court nullifies parliamentary results

The case of the petitioner is that the MP at the time of filing to contest the 2020 parliamentary elections, had not renounced his Canadian citizenship and thus held dual nationality.

He further avers that at the close of nominations on the 9th of October, the Assin MP had not still renounced his Canadian nationality. He says the Assin North MP who still holds himself as the MP is a complete violation of Article 94 (2a) and the court should declare his election null and void.

The judge said the MP, Joe Gyaakye Quayson violated constitutional provisions and other statutory provisions that guide Ghana’s elections.

According to the judge, on the capacity of the petitioner to maintain an action against the Assin North MP, the MP’s challenge of his capacity was overruled. He said the petitioner had the capacity and the petition was competent.

The Court explained that its jurisdiction could be invoked in an election petition when the EC conducts a parliamentary election and declares the results of the contest. Thus, he argued the Court’s jurisdiction was properly invoked.

The Independence of the EC in the conduct of elections is not in doubt and the court won’t interfere in the operations of the EC unless an illegality and an unconstitutionality are being perpetrated by the EC.

He ruled that nothing precludes a petitioner from invoking the High Court’s original jurisdiction and, therefore, dismissed this challenge by Joe Gyaakye Quayson.

The judge said the facts of the matter were not in doubt. That is on December 17, 2019, the Assin North MP applied to renounce his Canadian citizenship.

Between October 5th and 9th filed to contest the Parliamentary elections. That he got his renunciation certificate on November 26, 2020.

The argument of the Assin North MP was that the delay in getting his certificate was purely administrative and arose out of the two-month lockdown as a result of the pandemic.

To this, the court said, based on the certificate the MP submitted in his affidavit in response to the petition, he only ceased to be a Canadian citizen on November 26, 2020, and not any period before or at the time of filing to contest the elections.

The court indicated that the evidence on the face of the certificate destroys the case of the Assin North MP.

Speaking on Atinka TV‘s morning show, Ghana Nie, with Ekourba Gyasi Simpremu, Lawyer John Owusu Agyemen said, “For me, I think the Judge did not do well, he was in so much haste. He should have exercised patience.”

He said the judge should have adjourned the case for intense investigations before coming out with judgement.

Meanwhile, Lawyer John Owusu Agyemen said the Assin North MP holds allegiance to Ghana instead of Canada and that is why he came to Ghana to stand as MP.

Ghana|| Porcia Oforiwaa Ofori

Writer’s email: [email protected]

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