Electoral Commission (EC)
Electoral Commission (EC)

An Accra High Court has dismissed an application filed by Marricke Kofi Gane, an independent presidential candidate who challenged his disqualification by the Electoral Commission

The presidential aspirant asked the court to compel the commission to add his name to the presidential ballot as a candidate.

The court presided over by Mrs. Justice Elfreda Denkyi in a ruling said Gane delayed in filing his application before it.

The court further said in scale of balance of convenience, the general public would be denied their right to candidates of their choice should the application be granted in view the situation at hand, adding that Gane had no right to be protected.

According to the court, Gane was also not entitled to any of the reliefs sought hence the dismissal the application.

Gane was disqualified from the presidential race by Electoral (EC) on grounds of alleged forgery.

Dissatisfied with the EC’s decision, he filed an application for Certiorari in the form of a judicial review, asking the High Court to invoke its supervisory jurisdiction against the EC’s decision to disqualify him from the 2020 polls.

Gane through his lawyer had argued that, he was not given the opportunity to be heard on the allegation of forgery and improprieties against him.

The applicant contended that, even though the EC said they have referred the matter to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service, neither he nor his supporters have been invited for questioning.

Counsel for the applicant argued that the move is in breach of natural justice, and prayed the court to order the EC to put his client’s name on the presidential ballot for the 2020 polls.

The Electoral Commission in its response held that the court could not make any declaration in the nature of what the applicant was asking because the court do not have the nomination forms to make a proper judgment.
Counsel for the EC said, respondent has tied the hands of the applicant by keeping his nomination form from him and he cannot profit from same.

The commission contended that, a Certiorari application did not act as an automatic grant, but a discretionary one.

According to the EC, the court cannot make the said orders or declarations that the applicant is asking the court to because the court does not have the said nomination forms to understand what actually happened.

The commission therefore invited the court to dismiss the application in its entirety.

The independent presidential candidate had invoked the High Court’s supervisory jurisdiction in an application for review of the EC’s decision to disqualify him from the 2020 polls.

Gane was disqualified in October together with four others and was further accused of forgery.

The EC’s technical team found that a number of the signatures endorsing his form had a similar pattern.

According to the commission, police subsequently came to the conclusion that a number of the signatures endorsing his forms were fake.

The applicant wanted the Court to restrain the Commission from printing the ballot papers for the Presidential poll without his name on it.

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