A Professor of Political Science at the University of Ghana, Ransford Edward Van Gyampo, has said “absolute power has corrupted the President.”
His comment come on the back of the recent appointments made by President Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo onto the Board of the Electoral Commission.
The President appointed Salima Ahmed Tijani, Dr Peter Appiahene and Rev Akua Ofori Boateng to replace Hajia Sa-Adatu Maida, Ebenezer Aggrey-Fynn and Rebecca Kabukie Adjalo who have all retired.
The three have joined Jean Adukwei Mensa as Chairperson, Samuel Tettey as Deputy Chairman for Operations, Dr. Bossman Eric Asare, Deputy Chairman for Corporate and Adwoa Asuama Abrefa as Commissioner.
Prior to the swearing in of the three, concerns were raised about Salima Ahmed Tijani and Dr Peter Appiahene as being politically exposed persons who shouldn’t have been on the EC Board.
Dr. Appiahene has been said to be a Patron of TESCON –a pro NPP students union at the tertiary level of education –at the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) where he worked.
Also, there are flyers on social media indicating Dr. Appiahene’s quest to contest for offices on the ticket of the New Patriotic Party aside from videos of him defending the government and the NPP publicly on the media.
Salima Ahmed Tijani on the other hand is not found credible because of her mother who once served as a former High Commissioner under this same administration.
Speaking on the KeyPoints on TV3 Saturday, April 8, 2023, Prof. Gyampo added that President Akufo-Addo’s response to the concerns raised as those who vote are the most important stakeholders in the electoral process and not those who count the votes was uncalled for.
To him, even though political parties make appointments that favour their interest, President Akufo-Addo in the early days of his administration started something commendable by appointing the likes of Martin Amidu as Special Prosecutor, but has allowed himself to be corrupted by the absolute power vested in him as he approaches the latter part of his administration.
Meanwhile, the Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO) has called for the resignation of the two politically exposed persons.
According to CODEO, the appointments tend to make the election management body look partisan and affect its credibility in future elections.
CODEO is, however, demanding the immediate resignation of Dr. Peter Appiahene and Hajia Salima Ahmed Tijani as members of the EC.
Rev. Dr. Fred Deegbe in an address on behalf of CODEO asked the two newly appointed EC members to resign voluntarily.
“We are painfully aware that voluntary and constitutionally grounded revocation of this unfortunate and democratically problematic EC appointment by the President is extremely unlikely.
“However nothing stops the affected appointees namely Dr. Peter Appiahene and Hajia Salima Ahmed Tijani from voluntarily and honourably resigning from membership of the EC,” he indicated.
By Felix Anim-Appau|Onuaonline.com