Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Court cancels 2020 Assin North parliamentary election, orders for fresh polls

Court cancels 2020 Assin North parliamentary election, orders for fresh polls

The Cape Coast High Court in the Central Region has declared the 2020 parliamentary election held in the Assin North Constituency as null and void.

The court has therefore ordered for a fresh election to be conducted in the constituency.

This ruling was given on Wednesday, July 28, 2021, by the court presided over by Justice Kwasi Boakye.

In his judgment, Justice Boakye upheld that, the National Democratic Congress’ parliamentary candidate for the constituency, Joe Gyaakye Quayson breached the provisions of the constitution with regard to dual citizenship.

Background

Michael Ankomah-Nimfa, a resident of Assin Bereku in the Central Region, filed a petition at the Cape Coast High Court seeking to annul the declaration of Mr. James Gyakye Quayson as the Member of Parliament for the Assin North constituency.

In November last year, a group calling itself ‘Concerned Citizens of Assin North’ petitioned the Electoral Commission in the Central Region to withdraw the candidature of Mr. Quayson, arguing that he owes allegiance to Canada.

He was challenged for holding dual citizenship contrary to the expressed provision of Article 94 (2) (a) of the 1992 constitution of Ghana, which states, “A person shall not be qualified to be a member of Parliament if he or she – (a) owes allegiance to a country other than Ghana.”

The National Democratic Congress (NDC), had insisted that their MP is “a full citizen of Ghana who owes no allegiance whatsoever to any other country. He is a Ghanaian in law and in fact and qualifies to be a Member of Parliament according to the laws of Ghana.”

Order Assin North parliamentary election rerun

One of Ankomah-Nimfa‘s lawyers, Henry Nana Boakye, briefing the media during an earlier hearing of the case, indicated that their request is supported with case evidence.

“One of the reliefs we are seeking is for the court to order for re-election to be conducted in Assin North. We have stated our case forcefully, and we have supported it with case evidence. We have even filed our closing addresses, and we are sure that the respondents will be served. All of these are just delay antics and just to drag the matter behind. But we are forthright and resolute that this matter will be determined, and it will be determined on the merit of the case; and based on the 1992 constitution and the relevant laws regarding the qualification of an aspirant to be a candidate or to be elected as a Member of Parliament,” he said.

 

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