Political Scientist, Professor Ransford Gyampo, has slammed President Akufo-Addo over a purported instruction from the presidency requesting the CVs of senior management members of the Electoral Commission.
Although the circular from the Electoral Commission’s Director of Human Resource to the head office and regional directors suggests that the instruction was not to the EC alone but other state agencies, the political science lecturer singled out the EC, and condemned the president’s action.
His stance was ostensibly due to the autonomy and the sensitive nature of that state institution, and how others might interpret that instruction or request.
Besides, the circular did not explain why the presidency requires that information from people who are already in employment.
Without mincing words, Prof. Gyampo, while indirectly referencing some incidents that may have occurred under the tenure of President Akufo-Addo, said, “The history of Ghana’s Fourth Republic show that you are currently the worse President in promoting the sanctity of the independence of the Electoral Commission.”
“Why do you want to do this to an Independent Commission? It appears under your tenure, you are doing everything you can to decimate the independence of all independent institutions, but to what end?
He noted that the President’s excesses have largely gone unchecked due to the lack of courageous people to call him to order.
“Unfortunately, there aren’t courageous people around you to tell you to back off your attempts at annexing the Electoral Commission. Back in the days, Dan Botwe as General Secretary of the NPP could boldly tell President Kufuor in the face to back off his attempt to usurp the procurement powers of the Electoral Commission and the President had no choice than to listen.”
He has thus urged Akufo-Addo to quietly complete his term in office and leave without encroaching any further on the independent bodies of state.
“Please leave office and leave the sanctity of our independent institutions intact. This is not a practice worth emulating or repeating, Sir. This demand is unnecessary and it’s optics for the quest to deal with the independence deficit of the Electoral Commission are bad,” he said.
Prof. Gyampo also called on the EC to be assertive in defending its independence from such executive encroachment.
“But the Electoral Commission too must not be seen to be swallowing everything thrown to them by the President hook, line and sinker. As an independent Commission, it is backed by law to resist every attempt at subjugating the Commission under the Executive President,” he concluded in his Facebook post on Tuesday, May 30, 2023.
Both the presidency and the Electoral Commission are yet to comment on the development.