Efo Qweku Apedzego writes;
Elections has been one of the most delicate activities to be carried out in the world we found ourselves. It does not matter the magnitude of the people involved in the electoral processes and Koforidua Technical University is not an exception. Over the years our elections has come under criticisms, of which students are of the view that, most elections are rigged for certain favored aspirants. These allegations has triggered most students’ activists and certain stakeholders to be vigilant and make sure our 2019 elections will be devoid of any constitutional breaches.
We cannot fight this system if the Chief Commissioner is not ready to respect and uphold our constitution by carrying out his activities in accordance with our constitution. From the chronology of events that led to the appointment of Mr. Garry as our chief commissioner, one will expect that he will work to clear all doubts about his competence but this is not so. During his appointment it was alleged that aspirants gave some General Assembly members money to vote for Mr. Garry and as things unfolds now, it seems such allegations were true. Mr Garry has constantly breached every activity he has carried out with respect to our constitution. The following are some activities our commissioner has involved himself, which he carried out without respecting the constitution that brought him into office;
1. Even if the constitution does not state explicitly the members of the vetting panel, the chief Justice has breached all moral and ethical provisions of natural justice and shown a conflict of interest by being part of the process since irregularities happened on his watch. It clearly shows the CJ has been negligent in his duties and should be ashamed for allowing and being part of such malfeasance on his watch.
II. The current composition of the electoral commission is invalid and grossly violates Article 23 section (II) which states that;
“The commission shall be composed of at most two (2) students from each faculty, of which nominations to this effect shall be open to the General students’ body.”
The inclusion of Mr. Perry violates the constitutional mandates, which states that each faculty should have a preventative of at most TWO.
I. Article 24 Clause C ( Section V) which states that ; Prospective candidates for all SRC elected positions shall have a C.P.A. as follows
a. The President – 3.20 and above
b. All other executives positions -3.00 and above
With respect to this section of the constitution, the Electoral Commissioner should have disqualified, a Presidential aspirant by name Mr. Obed Mawupedzro Noussokpe and his running mate, Mr. Adamu Abdulai Faisal since the vice could not meet the constitutionally mandated CPGA requirement of 3.00 and above. The commissioner did not disqualified them but rather, used the back door to allow Mr Obed Mawupedzro Noussokpe to replace his vice during the verification processes. This shows a sign of favoritism and not been authoritative in decision making.
This contravenes Article 24 Clause C (section V) which stipulates the academic requirement for prospective candidates, as such the electoral commission does not have the prerogative right to determine in such instances. Once your vice does not qualify it automatically disqualifies your candidature
2. Also, Sylvester Nimo, contesting for the SRC Male Organizer position did not meet the constitutionally mandated CGPA requirement of 3.00 and above and the Electoral Commission intentionally qualified him after verification and went through vetting and was qualified by the EC.
3. Also, my investigation reveals that, Dean of Students Affairs mandated the Commissoner to sell all nomination forms through SRC’s bank account but the disobeyed that directive.
4. Finally, the electoral commission used its own prerogative and issued a general notice to the entire student’s body on 9th, April, 2019 to announce the reopen of nomination for various portfolios. Which constitutional provision mandate the EC to reopen nomination when all aspirants have successfully gone through vetting process and are now qualified candidates for elections. This clearly violates Article 25 (v) of the SRC constitution which states that, “In the event of a post not being contested for, the Electoral Commissioner shall open fresh nomination for that position for which voting will be limited to the members of the General Assembly at their inaugural meeting”.
So on what grounds did the commission reopen nomination?
In view of this, Mr. Obed Mawupedzro Noussokpe, a Presidential aspirant who had already gone through vetting picked nomination again and was vetted by a different panel on 11th April, 2019.Therefore, I’m tempted to say, the commissioner has been brought to office, to work in the interest of some aspirants but not to the interest of the entire students populace. As students we must always stand and fight in the interest of the students.
5. Finally, we have less than five (5) days to elections, and as stakeholders, we are yet knowing, which software we are to use in voting. Is this not alarming?
Why has the Commission not opened and bidding for the procurement of the software?
What is the motive in the dalliance in the procurement of the software?
Whose software are we going to use in this dying moment?
Can a sole sourcing software system be trusted?
Now, with all these irregularities perpetuated by the Commission, can you boldly say, 2019 Koforidua Technical University election will be FREE AND FAIR. Though most students are eager to vote come Wednesday, 17 2019, we must not overlook wrongdoings and set a bad precedence for the future. Great Peter Tosh sung a song titled “Equal Right”. He said, “Everybody is crying out for peace,
But none is crying out for justice
Equal right, justice
Take your peace and give us justice”
As concerned students, we are not going to sit and watch this constitutional breaches that will bring mayhem, aftermath of our elections. Therefore, we are advising all stakeholders, call the Commissioner to order and also address and petitions they have received with respect is our election.
Long live Ghana
FB/Efo Qweku Apedzego/KTU insider