The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the Electoral Commission to extend the nomination period for some 12 presidential hopefuls to November 8, 2016.
The 12 , including the Progressive People’s Party’s (PPP) Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, who secured a High Court ruling in his favour, were disqualified by the Electoral Commission for commiting various errors on their nomination forms.
In explaining the judgment of the seven-member panel of Justices of the Supreme Court, the presiding Justice, Sophia Adinyira, said their decision was to enable the EC give hearing to all parties involved in the legal tussle over the qualification, due to the limited time left for the election to be held.
The court gave the judgment in a case brought before it by the Electoral Commission, which said it disagreed with the ruling of the High Court in favour of Dr. Nduom, and wanted the Supreme Court to quash it, and also make a determination that will affect all other suits relating to the disqualification.
Below is the Supreme Court’s judgment:
Upon reading the affidavits and statement of cases by the applicant and interested party respectively;
Upon hearing Thaddeus Sory with him Sean Opoku, Sanya Anita Morrison and Reindof Twumasi Ankrah counsel for the applicant and Ayikoi Otoo with him Gary Nimako Marfo, Felix Ograh, Ofosu Appiah, Naa Djama Ayikoi Otoo and Barbara Brown Counsel for the interested party;
It is hereby ordered that: –
- The applicant extends the nomination period from today Monday, 7th November to the close of working day of Tuesday 8th November .
- The applicant should invite the interested party and all the presidential candidates who were able submit their nomination papers by the close of the nomination day on 30 September 2016 and were disqualified without a hearing and give them hearing within the extended period.
- In the appropriate cases, to afford candidates, the opportunity to comply with regulation 9 (2) of the Public Elections Regulations, 2016 (C.I. 94).
- Consequent to the above directives, we find it necessary and expedient to make a further order to stay all court proceedings pending in the various High Courts against the applicant by some of the disqualified presidential candidates on the same issue of having been denied a hearing to enable the EC to carry out its mandate in line with these orders.
Wherefore we accordingly stay all such proceedings in the High Courts.