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PRESIDENT CONFIRMS JEAN MENSA URGES HER TO BE APOLITICAL

General News

The newly appointed Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Adukwei Mensa, her two deputies, Eric Bossman, Samuel Tettey, and member of the Electoral Commission, Adwoa Asuama Abrefa,  have been charged to be neutral in the discharge of their duties.

The newly appointed Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Adukwei Mensa, her two deputies, Eric Bossman, Samuel Tettey, and member of the Electoral Commission, Adwoa Asuama Abrefa,  have been charged to be neutral in the discharge of their duties.

The President gave this admonition yesterday at the Jubilee House during their swearing in.

Jean Mensa takes over from Charlotte Osei who was removed from office, together with her two deputies, Amadu Sulley and Georgina Amankwah on grounds of stated misconduct and incompetence by a committee set up by the Chief Justice to investigate petitions leveled against them.

“The processes that led to their removal were in strict compliance with the Constitution of the Republic. They were initiated by employees of the Electoral Commission, and by an ordinary citizen with no affiliation to government or the ruling party,” President Akufo-Addo said.

He stated that the whole removal process was an instance of the rule of law and his party,the NPP, had no interest in it.

“Our only interest is to have an Electoral Commission that organizes credible, transparent elections. We do not want electoral victories handed to us by officials of the Electoral Commission. We want electoral victories handed to us by the people of Ghana,” he said.

He reminded the EC boss and her deputies that they assumed office at a time when “there is considerable anxiety in the nation about the work of the commission.”

“It is the quality of your work that will re-assure the Ghanaian people that the democratic system of government that they have chosen for their governance will be properly nurtured by an electoral system that allows their voice to be plainly and loudly heard,” the President said.

He continued that  it is no secret that has  spent much of his adult life fighting for the establishment of democracy and human rights in Ghana.

“And I have always fought for and advocated for a credible electoral process in Ghana. In emphasizing the importance and credibility of elections, it must be pointed out that the count, the collation, the declaration of results cannot and should not be more important than the sacred, God-given right of a citizen casting his or her ballot. I have said it before, and I will repeat it. Elections are about those who cast the vote, not those who count, not those who supervise, not those who transmit, and not those who declare. The heart of the democratic process is giving effect to the choices made by those who cast the vote,” he said.

He said he had confidence in the four persons and was hopeful that they will bring integrity, professionalism, and independence and fairness of mind to the discharge of their duties.

“They have been carefully selected, and, indeed, the Council of State, in proffering its advice, in its letter dated 26th July, 2018, to the President on their appointment, stated that “they were all eminently qualified to hold the respective positions, and, therefore, recommended that they be appointed accordingly.” Article 46 of the Constitution demands that, in the performance of their functions, they will not be “subject to the direction or control of any person or authority.” They answer only to the Ghanaian people, the Constitution of the Republic, and their conscience,” he added.

President Akufo-Addo was quick to add that their decisions would be scrutinized and that they should be guided by past events.

“Let the events of the past year guide you. Remember that, now more than ever, every single decision you take will be scrutinized to the letter. That, however, should not scare you, and, indeed, let no one try to cow you into submission. On the contrary, let this expectation of the Ghanaian people spur you on to great heights, and, above all, work so that the will of the Ghanaian people is upheld,” the President said.