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Dec polls Kofi Gane faces Court ruling on disqualification Nov 30

The Criminal Division of the Accra High Court presided over by Justice El-Freda Denkyi has fixed November 30 to rule on an application filed by Marricke Kofi Gane to quash his disqualification from the December 2020 election as an Independent Presidential candidate.

The applicant was disqualified from the race by Electoral Commission (EC) on grounds of alleged forgery.

Not satisfied with the decision, he filed an application for Certiorari in the nature of judicial review, asking the High Court to invoke it’s supervisory jurisdiction against the EC’s decision to disqualify him from the 2020 polls.

Moving his application through his Lawyer Nurudeen Saeed, he argued that, he was not given the opportunity to be heard on the alleged case of forgery and improprieties against him.

He contended that, even though the EC said they have referred the matter to the Criminal Investigations Department of the Ghana Police Service for investigations, neither he (applicant) nor those who endorsed his nomination forms have been invited for questioning.

He argued that such a move is in breach of natural justice and prayed the court to order the EC to put his client’s name on the presidential ballot of the 2020 ballot paper.

Rebutting to claims by the EC lawyers that, the court cannot make any declaration in the nature of what the applicant was asking on grounds that, the court doesn’t have the nomination form to make proper judgement,  counsel told the court that  the, respondent has tied the hands of the applicant by keeping his nomination forms from him and want to profit from same.

EC response

The EC led by lawyer Justice Amenuvor while arguing their  case on the point of law contended that, a Certiorari application does not act as an automatic grant, but a discretionary in nature.

According to the EC, the court cannot make the said orders or declarations that the applicant is asking the court to because, the court does not have the said nomination forms to understand what actually happend.

It cited various authorities including the Papa Kwesi Ndoum case against the EC in the run up to the 2016 polls.

He therefore prayed the court to dismiss the application in its entirety.

The court after listening to the parties fixed November 30, 2020 to rule on the application.

Background

Marricke Kofi Gane invoked the High Court’s supervisory jurisdiction in an application for review of the EC’s decision to disqualify him from the 2020 polls.

Mr. Gane was disqualified in October together with four others and further accused of associating with forgery.

The EC’s technical team found that a number of the signatures endorsing his form had a similar pattern.

According to the commission, police subsequently came to the conclusion that a number of the signatures endorsing his forms were fake.

He also wants the Court to restrain the Commission from printing the ballot papers for the Presidential poll without his name on it.

Source: Ghana.Dailyheritage.com.gh/Murtala Inusah

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