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Supreme Court Ruling On New Register; Here Is The Full Interpretation

IamFate 06/25/2020

The Supreme Court of Ghana has today the 25th of June, 2020 given the green light to the Electoral Commission (EC) to go ahead and compile a new voters’ register for the 2020 general elections.

The court, presided over by a seven-member panel in a ruling indicated that the election management body was independent and its action can only be guided by the court if it goes against the law.

Following the court's ruling on the use CI 126, many Ghanaians were left wondering what the details actually meant due to the technical nature of it.

Below, I have taken the trouble to break down the court's decision for you. Enjoy.

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1. The Court agrees with the NDC that the EC's must exercise its mandate with due regard to and in strict compliance with voting rights under Article 42.

2. The Court equally agrees with the NDC that these voting rights cannot be taken away capriciously and without due process constitutionally demanded under Article 296.

3. The Supreme Court however concludes that C. I. 126 which excludes the use of exiting Voter ID cards to qualify for the new register is valid.

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This is where is the issue lies, because:

4.The only document that expresses voting rights and which entitles every Ghanaian to vote at the moment is the exisitng voter ID.

Indeed, voting rights have already been exercised through the instrumentality of the exiting voter register in 2016, 2018, 2019 and 2020.

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5. I am suggesting strongly, that the exclusion of exiting voter ID, not in a proper election, but for identification purposes to acquire the next new voter ID is the most overt means of denying voting rights.

6. In agreeing with the NDC to protect voting rights, the Supreme Court did so prospectively under the ambit of C. I. 126. I don't know what underlines that thinking, that voting rights means voting rights that will accrue only under C. I 126?

7. By insisting on C. I. 126, every accrued voting right has been taken away in mass, ab initio until the compilation of a new one.

8. Due process and proper use of institutional discretion demand that before a voting right is denied, the person has to be given a hearing on why his voter card is constitutionally defective. This wasn't done. So again, when the Supreme Court agrees with the NDC that voting rights cannot be capriciously taken away, it so Prospectively under C. I 126.

WHAT IS THE LEGAL AND PRACTICAL EFFECT OF THIS DECISION?

a. The SC has allowed the EC to determine questions of citizenship, a mandate it does not possess.

b. If there were to be an election today without the new register under the almighty C. I. 126, no Ghanaian is qualified to vote in that election. This is an absurd interpretation.

In conclusion, let me pose this interpretive question for the consideration of Constitutional scholars:

If I were to go to the Supreme Court to seek a declaration that the Voter ID card I hold now was regularly obtained and is valid until invalidated by a court of law. What outcome will I get?

Please your comment below;

Source: opera.com
The views expressed in this article are the writer's, they do not reflect the views of Opera News. Read more>>
Top Comments
+233-26701**** · 06/25/2020
Pretender!
Sylvestersoboblay · 06/25/2020
hehe, both the EC and NDc had a case well interpreted by the judges.
+233-024216**** · 06/25/2020
fantastic question
JusticeAmanor_01 · 06/25/2020
Mr blockger so u do not understand the meaning of voting right??

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