Nana Addo won’t use COVID-19 as an excuse to stay in power longer – Oppong Nkrumah

The Akufo-Addo Government is not contemplating an extension of its first term constitutional mandate despite the seeming distortion of the political calendar by COVID-19, Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has said.


The Minister, at a press briefing on Tuesday, pointed out that the government does not see “any justifiable reason to seek to extend its first term constitutional mandate using the virus as an excuse, without a safe, free and fair election.”


The conduct of the December 7, 2020 polls is quite uncertain, following a suspension of some electoral activities over COVID-19.


While some have cast doubts over the ability of the Electoral Commission (EC) to compile a new voter’s register ahead of the presidential and parliamentary elections, others have already been considering the practicalities of some constitutional provisions to be considered.


Mr. Nkrumah said the government had taken note of the commentary and has no plans of extending its mandate.


The Ofoase Ayirebi legislator indicated that just as other countries such as Ivory Coast and Burundi are considering ways of holding elections in the wake of the pandemic, Ghana should also invest its energies in exploring how to do same.


“The government is of the view that instead of contemplating measures that are not envisaged in the constitution, our best energies, our innovation and creativity should be invested in exploring how a country like ours can have safe and free elections.”


A renowned media practitioner and Host of Metro TV’s Good Evening Ghana, Paul Adom-Otchere, has already ruled out any possibility of the Chief Justice ascending to the highest office of the presidency in case there is no general election due to the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus in Ghana.


Mr. Adom-Otchere said the option would be impossible since it has no grounds in the country’s legal framework.


The Electoral Commission (EC) was forced to suspend indefinitely plans to compile a new voters register which was scheduled to begin on April 18, due to COVID-19.


The EC had said it was collaborating with health experts to decide on a more favorable date depending on the prevalence rate of the Novel Coronavirus.


It however indicated on Monday, April 11, 2020, that it will observe the necessary protocols when it begins the compilation of a new voters register.


Source: CNR