Bernard Mornah has asked political parties to allow President John Mahama to use the Constitution to appoint a new EC boss.
The General Secretary of the Peoples National Convention (PNC), Bernard Mornah has urged Ghanaians to stop bothering the President with calls for broader consultation among key stakeholders before appointing a new Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC).
Bernard Mornah opined that “we are making too much noise,” on the issue saying “upon retirement, Afari Gyan has to be replaced and I think that it is right and fair to allow the president to do what the constitutions says.”
The current EC Chairman, Dr. Kwadwo Afari Gyan, will retire in June 2015. Per Ghana’s 1992 Constitution, the President has the power to appoint a successor on the advice of the Council of State.
Many including the Minority spokesperson on Legal and Constitutional Affairs, Joe Osei Owusu, have thus called for the appointment to be transparent.
Reacting to such calls, the PNC General Secretary insisted that any attempt to compel the President to extend the consultation beyond the Council of State will be watering down the powers of President Mahama.
“Was that the case when the Chief Justice was appointed by President Kufour? Was that the case when the other commissioners were appointed by President Kufour?
Was that the case when the two deputies of the electoral commission were replaced by Mills? Was that the case when the chairman of the National Commission on Civic Education was appointed?” he asked.
But the General Secretary of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) Kofi Asamoah-Siaw disagreed. For him, it is only proper that the President at least subjects his nomination to Parliamentary approval saying “we fully subscribe to the constitutional review commission’s recommendation that we should change the process of appointment of the chairman of the electoral commission to a situation where the president nominates a person and the person appears before parliament for two thirds parliamentary approval.
“In that case we are guaranteed of a general acceptance of the candidacy of anybody that the president will appoint as oppose to the current situation when the president does that with the advice of the Council of State.”