Deputy Majority in Parliament, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, has accused the Minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) in Parliament of plot to poison the minds of Ghanaians against the government.
The Minority, he said, is creating an impression the Akufo-Addo-led government is in cahoots with the judiciary to pinch a parliamentary seat from the side.
According to him, the Minority needs to wake up to the reality of the Rule of Law, which is part of the governance of the country regardless of how desperate the party is for power.
Mr. Afenyo-Markin raised these concerns Friday in reaction to the Minority leader’s response to the Cape Coast High Court ruling on the Assin North 2020 Parliamentary election.
The Court on Tuesday annulled the results and declared the seat vacant but Hon. Haruna Iddrisu described the ruling as a travesty.
He raised concerns of the law courts being used surreptitiously to chop off a minority seat for the ruling party to tilt the balance of power and weaken the time-tested historical notion of checks and balances.
The Deputy Majority leader, however, argued that judicial power of Ghana is vested only in the judiciary and neither the President nor Parliament has been given any mandate on such authority.
The NDC, he said, has gained notoriety for always coming out to scandalize the judiciary or ruling whenever a judgment does not go in their favour.
According to Afenyo-Markin, there is precedent in the courts in which former NPP MP for Bawku Central, Adamu Sakande, was asked whether at the time of filing he owed allegiance to any other county.
He said, “His answer was, he had initiated the process of giving up his British citizenship. Accordingly, he was not qualified as a candidate let alone coming to occupy the chamber of Parliament.”
“He was denied the opportunity and not only that but the fact that he had lied on oath… The forms that we fill at the Electoral Commission (EC) you depose an affidavit and because he misled the EC and that itself is a criminal offense, he was prosecuted, convicted and sentenced.”
According to him, the NDC that pursued Sakande over the issue and got him jailed is today complaining adding, “You see the NDC put up a legal challenge, when they win they are happy but when they lose they come home crying.”
The Deputy Majority leader argued that the issue of not giving up citizenship was started by the NDC and the party made sure someone was jailed because the complainant did not only pursue the civil angle but also the criminal angle and was even a witness in court.
“At that time, was the NDC interfering with the judicial process, or are they telling us they interfered with a judicial process or that when they were in power that was what they were doing,” he quizzed?
He noted that the Minority has a duty to protect the peace but when their conduct escalates tension and they mislead people into believing that state institutions are not working, it leads to chaos and lawlessness.
The Minority and its leadership, he said, should not have come out to scandalize the court and that the least they could do was to respect the court’s decision and challenge the ruling.
Speaking on a claim by the Minority leader that ‘cooperation will suffer,’ Mr. Afenyo-Markin noted such words should not be coming from the Hon. Haruna Iddrisu.
He averred that if the Minority intends to obstruct government business because of the court ruling, then Ghanaians should take cognizance of the NDC’s agenda.
He stated that the NDC is not demonstrating sufficient commitment to democracy and rule of law with its threat to frustrate government business because the judiciary has taken an independent decision in a judicial matter.