A lecturer at the University of Ghana School of Law is demanding the revocation of the law creating the Oti region.
Dr Abdul Baasit Bamba has cited the Electoral Commission (EC) and President Nana Akufo-Addo for constitutional violations and blunders in the creation of the region.
The Oti Region was carved out of the existing Volta Region in 2018 after a referendum in the area had received a massive endorsement.
But Dr Basit Bamba in his article says the exercise may have been one in futility.
In part one of a five parts article , he said the Hohoe constituency can now be found in two regions i.e. the Oti and Volta region.
“The Brobbey Commission proposed that the Oti Region should comprise the Biakoye District, Jasikan District, Kadjebi District, Krachi East Municipality, Krachi Nchumuru District, Krachi West District, Nkwanta North District, Nkwanta South Municipality and Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe, and Lolobi Traditional areas. (Page xxv of the Commission’s report),” he wrote.
He continued “There was however an apparent legal/constitutional constraint to the creation of the Oti Region. By virtue of the Representation of the People (Parliamentary Constituencies) Instrument, 2012 (C.I. 78) Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe, and Lolobi Traditional areas are located in the Hohoe Constituency of the Volta Region. (Pages 67 and 68 of CI 78).
Jean Mensa is the EC Chair
He explained that in practical and legal terms, what it means with the creation of the Oti Region with Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe, and Lolobi Traditional areas being made part of the Oti Region will result in the Hohoe Constituency straddling or falling within the Volta Region and the Oti Region.
Based on this, the law lecturer said it is “absolutely shocking and unacceptable that the Electoral Commission woefully failed to appreciate the constitutional impediments to the recommendation of the Brobbey Commission that Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe, and Lolobi Traditional areas located in the Hohoe Constituency of the Volta Region should form part of the Oti Region.”
According to Dr Basit Bamba, “In what looks like a comedy of legal errors, the President also perpetuated the same legal blunder. By the Oti Region Instrument 2019(CI 112) President created the Oti Region out of the Volta Region with Santrokofi, Akpafu, Likpe, and Lolobi Traditional area forming part of the Oti Region. (Page 3 of CI 112).”
He said it is absolutely unfortunate that the aspirations of the people of the Oti Region for a new region have been jeopardised by the failure and or neglect of the EC to pay attention to detail resulting in a shameful constitutional blunder.
“Worse still, the taxpayers’ money appears to have been wasted in the conduct of a referendum for the creation of the Oti Region, which now looks like an exercise in futility,” he added.
The law lecturer recommends a resolution of this legal blunder saying “ The creation of the Oti Region by the President through the Oti Region Instrument 2019(CI 112) is a manifest constitutional catastrophe and the President should consider revoking CI 112 and restarting the processes for the creation of an Oti Region that is not riddled with such obvious legal blunders.”