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24.01.2007 General News

Electoral Commission asks NDC to go to court

By myjoyonline
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The Electoral Commission has said the only option available to the opposition National Democratic Congress was to go to court over the disputed by-election results in the Fomena Constituency.

The NDC rejected the outcome of the poll citing the inclusion of two polling centres; Dadwene and Kyekyewere which the party insisted were not legally recognized as part of the Fomena constituency.

Although local officials of the NDC agreed to the addition of the centres in the by-election, the national leadership said it did not recognize that agreement.

The EC's Director of Elections, Albert Kofi Arhin told Joy News that once the results had been declared, the court would be the next resort.

“What we have done is to declare the results of that election and once this has been done, the next step is that we are going to gazette the results and the law is that
Three weeks after gazetting any body who is dissatisfied can take any action. We are under the rule of law and if anybody judges and we are guilty then we revert to the status quo as is being demanded but as at now there is very little we can do we have declared our results and so a dissatisfied party can only resort to either the court or abide by what we did.”

Asked how the problem came about, Mr Arhin said information available to the EC indicated that the parties had been using the existing structure for sometime now, such as during the 2004 election and the District Assembly election in 2006 and it appeared there was some kind of compromise among the parties.

He however admitted that it was wrong for the parties themselves and the staff of the Electoral Commission in the District to have forged the compromise without the knowledge of the Headquarters.

Mr. Arhin said when the issue first got to the attention of the EC, it was rather late in the day to go and collect everybody's I/D cards to be issued new ones so the EC, insisting that the proper thing ought to be done, called a District Inter Party Advisory Committee involving all the parties which mutually agreed to proceed with the election.

He gave the assurance that the EC would proceed to correct the anomaly soon.

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