The largest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) is at it again!
And this time around the party has vowed to use every possible means to discredit whoever President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo nominates this week to replace the sacked Electoral Commission (EC) Chairperson, Mrs Charlotte Osei, Today can report.
“If Ghanaians are expecting to know the next chairperson of the Electoral Commission anytime soon, then they should forget about it, because we are not going to allow it to happen,” a female voice purported to have chaired a meeting by some NDC members, believed to be loyalists of former President John Dramani Mahama, held on Thursday, June 28, 2018 in Accra, was heard in a leaked audio tape which is in the possession of Today.
Barely a fortnight ago, President Akufo-Addo removed Mrs Charlotte Osei and her two Deputies, Amadu Sulley and Mrs Georgina Opoku Amankwa, from office.
This came after a committee set up by the Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo, pursuant to Article 146(4) of the 1992 Constitution, to investigate separate complaints brought against the three persons by Ghanaian citizens, recommended their removal from office.
It will be recalled that some staff of the EC petitioned President Akufo-Addo somewhere in July 2017, to remove Mrs Osei from office, over allegations of fraud and financial malfeasance as well as abuse of office.
A five-member committee was subsequently set up by the chief justice to investigate the alleged corruption.
The committee recommended their removal on the basis of stated misbehaviour and incompetence, pursuant to Article 146 (1) of the 1992 Constitution.
But some NDC chieftains who suspected political interference in the work of the committee, and the subsequent removal of Mrs Osei from office, on the leaked tape registered their displeasure, and swore by their lives to make this country ungovernable for the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Among plans hatched by the NDC to derail the process of appointing a new EC boss include resorting to several court injunctions, nationwide demonstrations, boycotting national events, influencing its members and neutrals in the Council of State to reject any nominee by the president and above all, using some journalists and think-thanks to challenge the recommendations of the committee.
After failing to carry out its planned demonstration against the removal of Mrs Osei from office, due to the sudden demise of former Vice President, Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, the NDC has initiated a plan B agenda.
Mr Amissah-Arthur’s death occurred in the early hours of Friday, June 29, 2018 same day of the planned NDC demonstration.
The NDC, however, is not relenting on its determination to make it almost impossible for the president to appoint a new EC boss, hence the party’s secret meeting last week to prosecute their next agenda.
The ploy, according to the leaked tape, “is to ensure that they, [the NDC] use its members and other neutrals in the Council of State to neutralise any appointment that will be put forward by the President.”
The meeting, which was held at the Ange Hill Hotel at East Legon in Accra, was attended by eight kingpins of the NDC.
The NDC deliberately chose Ange Hill Hotel owned by Osei Ameyaw, a known NPP stalwart, just to take away any form of suspicion that people might harbour with the presence of such NPP chiefs.
Discreet information gathered by Today indicated that the NDC would use Dr Nii Kotei Dzani, the Groupe Chairman of Groupe Ideal Finance, who is also a member of the Council of State to lead the party’s agenda.
“The NDC is all out to push through their agenda with huge financial inducement,” a deep throat source told Today.
The NDC, Today’s investigations further revealed, was prepared to pay as much as a million Ghana cedis to some Council of State members who will acquiesce to the party’s trickery.
Already a private citizen, Fafali Nyonator, believed to be an NDC sympathizer, had sued the Attorney General over the dismissal Mrs Charlotte Osei.
Fafali Nyonator, who filed the suit was seeking an order of perpetual injunction restraining President Akufo-Addo from appointing any person to the position of chairperson of the Electoral Commission until that position has become lawfully vacant in accordance with proper processes and procedures as by law established.
And more of such suits, Today gathered, in the coming weeks, will be slammed on the government.
Meanwhile, President Akufo-Addo is enjoined by the Fourth Republican Constitution, Article 70 (6) which states that, “If a member is absent or dies, the Commission shall continue its work until the President, acting on the advice of the Council of State, appoints a qualified person to fill the vacancy.”
But, according to our sources at the said meeting, “that constitutional exercise will not receive the full backing of the members of the Council of State.”
Story: Atta KWAKU BOADI
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