The General Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) John Boadu has incurred the wrath of traditional rulers for warning them for being lawless for criticising the controversial push by the Electoral Commission (EC) to compile a new voters’ register.
The NPP scribe had launched an offensive against the dissenting traditional rulers during an in a recent interview on Accra based Neat FM. According to Mr. Boadu the statement by the National House of chiefs warning the EC not to disenfranchise any Ghanaian in the upcoming voter registration exercise amounts to siding with the opposition and that it amounts to lawlessness.
Accra based Power FM, the Dormaa hene said the comments were in bad taste. He called on the leadership of the NPP and the president to call Mr Boadu to order.
“John Boadu leads a big party, he must be careful, as chiefs we don’t just get up and talk anyhow. We know our role and so we know what we are talking about. I have seen many regimes go and come but the Dormaa stool is still here. I witness that of Rawlings, Kufour, Prof Mills, John Mahama has come and gone and so will Nana Addo. Don’t they know they will also leave power at some point? How can John Boadu describe as lawless? We have invited but they don’t want to come and instead of people John Boadu to condemn it he’s rather insulting us. Well I know very soon they will be coming around for campaign and we will be here waiting for them,” The Omanhene of the Dormaa Traditional Area, Osagyefo Oseadeeyo Agyeman Badu II warned the NPP scribe in a counter interview on Accra-based Power FM.
The National House of Chiefs-the umbrella body of traditional rulers in Ghana, had recently complained bitterly about how the EC has disrespected them by refusing to hour a scheduled meeting with them to discuss the controversial new register.
The Vice President of the National House of Chiefs, Daasebre Kwebu Ewusi VII, in an interview with Citi News said the posture of the commission was worrying.
“Other parties petitioned the house because of this hullabaloo. We heard from them [parties] and we said that then we need to hear from her [EC] so that we can also see how best we can be advised.”
“…if you are not able to honour our invitation let someone come from any of her branches to Kumasi and inform Nananom, that she cannot make it, but none of that happened. As a matter of fact, we don’t know why she [Jean Mensa] doesn’t want to see us or avail herself to the house, whatever it is, we have no idea.”
Daasebre Kwebu Ewusi VII further urged all political parties to prioritize peace and unity, before during and after the elections.
The National House of Chiefs in an earlier statement asked the EC to ensure that no Ghanaian is disenfranchised ahead of the 2020 General Elections.
The Chiefs in an official statement said, the EC had no right to institute a new registration process that could disenfranchise many Ghanaian voters.
The EC had made serious claims that the current voters’ register was compromised with the insertion of foreigners. The EC, therefore, initiated constitutional instruments that will prescribe a new register and processes to compile it.
However, in its plan, the EC set up the National ID card and the Ghanaian passport as the only two primary documents to gain eligibility for registration. The EC’s position clearly means those who had already registered and are holding the existing voters’ ID cards would lose their status and would have to re-register.
The bone of contention, however, is the fact that barely 12 million Ghanaians hold either a Ghanaians passport or a national ID card, this means that a significant number of the more than 18 million Ghanaians eligible to be registered could be disenfranchised.