The Supreme Court has ordered the Electoral Commission (EC), to extend nomination period to Tuesday, November 8. This is to give more opportunity to disqualified candidates to correct errors cited on their nomination forms.
The seven-man panel headed by Presiding Judge Sophia Adinyira, ruled that the nomination closure date be moved from Monday, the 7th of November, to Tuesday the 8th of November.
According to Justice Adinyira, the EC is to extend nomination period with immediate effect while all lawsuits on candidates’ disqualification are to be suspended. This is to enable the affected nominees correct the various errors on their nomination forms and be reconsidered by the Electoral Commission.
The Electoral Commission (EC), on the 10th of October, disqualified 13 presidential aspirants from contesting in the 2016 presidential race. Among them are Paa Kwesi Nduom of the Progressive Peoples’ Party, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings of the National Democratic Party, [See full list here].
The reasons for the EC’s disqualification of the candidates revolves around nomination filing errors.
Several of the disqualified aspirants has filed suits against the EC, challenging their disqualification. Aside Dr Kwesi Nduom’s case, there are five other lawsuits filed against the EC by disqualified presidential aspirants in which they are all challenging their disqualification. That of NDP’s Konadu was dismissed on the grounds of procedural errors.
Of all the suits, PPP’s Kwesi Nduom is one of those that have received significant consideration from the court. An Accra High Court on Friday, October 28, ruled that the EC allows the PPP flagbearer to correct the errors cited in his form, after which they should reconsider his candidacy.
The High Court had described the EC’s disqualification as a breach of the CI 94 law governing Ghana’s elections as well as the laws of natural justice since the Commission failed to afford the nominees opportunity to correct the errors before effecting their disqualification.
However, the EC refused to accept the High Court’s ruling and decided to head to the Supreme Court for redress. The Commission had earlier said it is an independent body hence, cannot be pushed by court nor any other body into rescinding her decision.