A leading member of the New Patriotic Party, Dr Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe, has described as unfortunate calls for President John Dramani Mahama to have a broader consultation with political parties in selecting the next chairman of the Electoral Commission.
The Constitution states that “The President shall, acting on the advice of the Council of State, appoint the Chairman, Deputy Chairmen, and other members of the Electoral Commission.”
But some political parties have urged the President to consult with the various parties in choosing a new chairman. Some civil society organisations have also joined the advocacy believing this will serve the country’s larger interest although that is not grounded in the Constitution.
Dr Nyaho-Tamakloe disagreed with his party’s position, saying the calls for consultation were unwarranted and unconstitutional.
“This nation is governed by a Constitution and this is not the first time that we have had an EC Chairman and I believe strongly that we should go strictly by what the Constitution says. This whole issue about broad consultation is unconstitutional and we should not even think about it at all. I don’t believe at all in that. The Constitution says the President will act on the advice of the Council of State. We have a Council of State in place and they are made up of very prominent people and if I can say so we have all 10 regional representation there.”
“So what is the problem? This is an unnecessary problem that we want to saddle this country with once again and I don’t think that should be allowed.”
Dr Tamakloe insisted that arguments that the President appointed most of the members of the Council of State and so they could do his bidding did not hold water.
“President Kufuor appointed almost all the present members we have on the Electoral Commission and I think that was done orderly. Now, what has become so new that we should worry ourselves about this now. The Constitution states clearly that the President will only act on the advice of the Council of State. I think we have to be careful not to drag this country into unnecessary problems,” he emphasised.