NDC vs EC: Supreme Court ruling ‘bogus’ and ‘manipulated’ – Baba Jamal

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A legal team member of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) is upset with the final verdict of the Apex Court between his party and the Electoral Commission (EC) over the compilation of a new voters’ register.

Baba Jamal in an interview with NEAT FM’s morning show ‘Ghana Montie’ repeatedly described the ruling as ‘bogus’ and ‘manipulated’ to suit the EC and the New Patriotic Party (NPP).

The Supreme Court has ruled that the Electoral Commission should go ahead and compile a new voters’ register.

The seven-member panel of Justices presided over by Chief Justice Anin Yeboah gave the ruling on Thursday, 25th June 2020.

The others include; Justices Jones Dotse, Paul Baffoe Bonnie, Sule Gbagegbe, Samuel K. Marful-Sau, Nene Amegatcher, and Professor Ashie Kotey.

Inconsistency and confusion

According to him, the court has managed to confuse the NDC with its bias verdict which they (NDC) are not content with.

“We [NDC] are not happy with the ruling and we have every right to disagree with the Court. I know government manipulated this ruling. This is bad and it’s going to affect this country. The ruling is full of inconsistency and confusion,” he told host Mac Jerry Osei Agyemang.

NDC, other parties claim victor after ruling

However, the parties involved in the case, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and private citizen Mark Takyi-Banson on the one hand, and the election management body on the other, are both claiming victory as far as their positions on whether or not the old voter ID card should be used for the compilation, is concerned.

The General Secretary of the NDC, Mr. Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, told journalists after the verdict that Supreme Court ruled in the party’s favour while Deputy Attorney General Godfred Yeboah Dame also said the EC’s position was upheld.

Confusion

Journalists in the court were left confused by the Supreme Court ruling as far as the old voter ID card issue is concerned.

The lawyers from both parties, according to reporters, were seeking clarification from the Justices.

Background

Mr. Takyi-Banson sued the EC for excluding the current voter ID card from the upcoming registration exercise.

Parliament recently passed the Public Election (Amendment) Regulation, 2020 (C.I. 126) to amend C.I.91 making the passport and Ghana card as the only breeder documents that can be used to register as a voter.

Mr. Takyi-Banson prayed the court to grant an order directing that C.I.126 violates the provisions of article 42 and 45 of the 1992 Constitution to the extent that it excludes Birth Certificates issued to Ghanaians as a mode of identification and establishing qualification to be registered in the register of voters.

The plaintiff also sought a similar relief for the voter ID card as well as a declaration that the Electoral Commission’s decision to compile a new register of voters is “inconsistent with and a violation of article 45(a) of the 1992 constitution of the Republic of Ghana.”

Mr. Takyi-Banson’s case was consolidated with that of the NDC, which had earlier dragged the EC to the apex court over the same issue.

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