The Electoral Commission today [Wednesday], officially submitted what is supposed to be the full list of persons who found their way onto the voters’ register using the National Health Insurance Scheme card as a proof of Ghanaian citizenship, prior to the 2012 elections.
The Supreme Court issued the order on Thursday June 23, asking the Commission to respond to it in six days, to enable it bring closure to the matter.
Citi News sources at the court say the document, which is captured on a CD, was submitted on Wednesday afternoon.Following the submission, the Court is expected to hear the case on Thursday, June 30.
However the applicant in the case, the PNC’s Abu Ramadan is yet to be notified. It is unclear yet how many names are in the document.
There were suggestions the Commission could not meet the deadline considering the workload involved.
Supreme Court directive
The panel of five judges in issuing the June 23 directive also asked the Commission to provide them with a detailed plan on how they were going to carry out the deletion and re-registration of the same people who would be affected by the deletion.
They also warned that they will not allow the Electoral commission, to plunge the country into chaos.
The Supreme Court’s six-day ultimatum became necessary after the former People’s National Convention (PNC) Youth Organizer, Abu Ramadan, went back to the court to seek clarity regarding the removal of unqualified persons on the voters register.
The apex court on May 5 2016, asked the Electoral Commission to expunge from the current voters’ register the names of all persons who registered and voted in the 2012 elections, with the NHIS card as a proof of identity.
The ruling followed a suit filed by Abu Ramadan, and one, Evans Nimako, who in 2014 won a lawsuit that barred the use of NHIS cards for registration of potential voters.
The two, among other reliefs, wanted the current register declared inappropriate for the November polls.
But the EC after studying the ruling said it’s understanding did not suggest the use of any new process to delete the names of those who registered with NHIS cards, since there are already laid down procedures for expunging ineligible names.
The EC’s explanation however angered Mr. Ramadan who felt the Commission was disrespecting the explicit orders of the court.
His position was further strengthened when one of the judges who gave the May 5 ruling, stated categorically that the ruling was clear and unambiguous and that the EC must remove the names of persons who registered with the NHIS card.
He subsequently got the Supreme Court to issue the six-day ultimatum to the Commission.
By: Ebenezer Afanyi Dadzie/citifmonline.com/Ghana