Hassan Ayariga, the presidential candidate of the All People’s Congress party, was recently disqualified, that is, rendered incompetent to contest in the forthcoming elections in Ghana.
He is now calling for the chairperson of the Ghanaian electoral commission, Charlotte Osei, to step down before the approaching elections. Mr. Ayariga added that if she does not resign, the elections which are set to hold on 7th December will no longer be deemed transparent and credible.
However, Ayariga seems to be fighting a one-man battle. Civil society groups have dismissed his call for Osei to step down, stating that Charlotte Osei has always been impartial in her job.
The commission announced the participants who have been qualified to contest these elections. Of all the seven names, Hassan Ayariga’s was nowhere found due to his inability to meet all the criteria necessary to qualify. This made it the second time Ayariga has been disqualified.
Ayariga told VOA:
“This EC [electoral commission] boss has actually destroyed the credibility of the commission and the commissioners.”
“Now if we are going into an election with such a person what do you expect? Do you think we are going to have a peaceful election? Do you think other political parties would accept the results in good faith when [Osei] has demonstrated in several places and on several occasions that she is not credible and she cannot be trusted?”
Naming Charlotte Osei to head the government’s electoral commission “is the worst mistake the president of the republic has done so far, and she must resign immediately,” Ayariga said.
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He further added that Osei holding the position for less than a year, and having more than 15 cases taken to court – which were overturned – is a sign of her incredibility.
Ayariga broke away from the People’s National Convention (PNC) because he felt cheated not only by his party but also by the Electoral Commission (EC) which supervised the primaries and the police for trying to sabotage his prospect of being re-elected.
Ghanaians head to the polls on December 7.