Civil Society Group, Center for Progressive Governance (CenProG) has stated its firm support for the chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Mrs. Charlotte Osei, calling attempts by the New Patriotic Party government to remove her as deployment of communist inferior tactics.
In a statement, the group warns that the motions that the government is going through are dangerous and constitute assault on the pillars of Ghana’s democracy that potentiate anarchy in the country.
“The Center for Progressive Governance (CenProG) would like to condemn in no uncertain terms the malicious attempt by government and its surrogates to assault the pillars of our democracy by the deployment of communist inferior tactics to oust the Chairperson of Ghana’s Electoral Commission and reiterate our unflinching support for Mrs. Charlotte Osei,” it said in a statement.
The statement, which was jointly signed by its Executive Secretary, Sawadogo Mahmoud, and its Executive Director, Mallam Yahya Mohammed, lamented that the attempt to remove Mrs. Osei from office, which it said was despicable, is still ongoing in spite of the fact that there is no basis for impeachment.
Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo, one of the many family members of President Akufo-Addo who has been appointed by him into officialdom, announced the constitution of a five- member committee to probe the EC Chair on account of issues raised by some unknown petitioners.
Shockingly, the constitution of the panel, which can lead impeachment of the EC Chairperson, implies that the Chief Justice has established prima facie grounds for the possible impeachment of the EC chairperson, even though the petitioners are not really known.
The process leading to this point has been a very clumsy one, with some 17 unknown persons said to have petitioned the President to remove the EC Chair on the basis of 27 allegations, including alleged sympathies towards the opposition NDC.
The shrouded nature of the petitioners, whose identities were not known, coupled with a lot of mistakes that had been committed in the petition to the Presidency, had led to many Ghanaians calling on President Akufo-Addo to dismiss the petition.
Rather than dismiss the petition however, the Presidency had called the petitioners and coached them to amend the petition and then forwarded same to the Chief Justice, for action.
Through it all, the identity of the petitioners was not known by anybody apart from the Flagstaff House and probably the Chief Justice, with Madam Charlotte Osei herself also kept in the dark. Recently, Ghanaians have been told that the number of the petitioners has reduced from 17 to two and that the 27 allegations that had originally, been leveled against the EC Chairperson, have been reduced to 6. These six petitioners are said to be drivers at the Commission even though the allegations raised include alleged procurement impropriety.
Even so, the EC Chairperson has said that she is yet to know who her accusers are. Again, she has also written to request that she be furnished with the identity of the members of the panel that she will be facing in a probe. CenProg, in its statement, pointed out the fact that the NPP government had taken a stance against Mrs. Charlotte Osei immediately the woman had been appointed EC Chair by former President Mahama, underscoring that the attempt to impeach her is totally political.
“The NPP has always maintained a vexatious and unending campaign and/or agenda against the reputation of the EC boss to the extent that known surrogates were sponsored to petition Chathan House against the nomination of Mrs. Charlotte Osei. This regardless, the United States Government through the Embassy in Ghana duly recognized her with the Woma of Courage Award.
“CenProg will like to call on all well meaning Ghanaians, both home and abroad to rise against this despicable and unfortunate attempt to to disturb the peaceful atmosphere in the country bearing in mind the bad precedence being set in entertaining this incompetent frivolity. We also call on our development partners to keep an eye on this issue and offer counsel to the government to desist from any Machiavellian attempts to plunge Ghana into anarchy,” CenProG said.