The General Secretary of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), Mr Kofi Yeboah has appealed to the GJA Election Dispute Adjudication Committee to reverse the "unconstitutional" decision of the Elections Committee to announce nomination fees for its national elections.
Mr Yeboah's appeal contained in a letter to the Chairman of the GJA Election Dispute Adjudication Committee and dated April 13, 2021, argues that the Election Committee blatantly breached the GJA Constitution 2004 when it announced nomination fees that were not determined by the National Council of the GJA.
Quoting from the GJA constitution, Mr Yeboah contends that the Elections Committee does not have the mandate to determine nomination fees.
"Article 48(b) of the GJA Constitution 2004 provides: "Candidates for all Executive positions at both National and Regional levels shall pay a non-refundable fee on submission of nomination papers. The National Council shall determine the nomination fee" (emphasis mine)," the appeal reads.
"The nomination fees announced by the GJA Elections Committee in its press release under reference were not determined by the National Council of the GJA. In fact, the National Council is in the process of making such determination for submission to the Elections Committee. Be that as it may, I expected the Elections Committee to have consulted the National Executive/National Council and/or the GJA Constitution for proper guidance".
Clandestine publication of members in good standing
Mr Yeboah also claims that the powers of the GJA National Executive were also usurped twice this year when a "purported list of members in good standing which the Elections Committee shall use as voters list" were published in the Daily Graphic first on February 10, 2021, and March 13, 2021.
According to him, both publications were not authorised and/or caused by the GJA national executive.
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He further warned that the "circumstances under which the two publications were ghostly and clandestinely made, without authority from the National Executive, smack of bad faith in the electoral process and that may grossly undermine the already scarce confidence some people have in the electoral process".
"On record, the National Executive has NOT authorized, published or cause to be published any list of members in good standing which the Elections Committee shall use as voters list per the proper interpretation of the constitutional provisions referenced hereunder," the appeal reads.
"Sir. to clarify matters, the National Executive was in the process of compiling a list of members in good standing for publication. But before the completion of that process, a publication was made in the Daily Graphic edition of February 10, 2021, on a purported list of GJA members in good standing. That publication was NOT authorized and/or caused by the National Executive.
"Again, before a scheduled meeting of the National Executive to discuss and address the issues that emerged after the said publication, a second publication of purported GJA members in good standing was made in the Daily Graphic edition of March 13, 2021.
"That publication was also NOT authorized and/or caused by the National Executive. At a subsequent meeting between the National Executive and the Elections Committee, the latter claimed it did not authorize or cause the publications under reference. Since the two publications were not authorized and/or caused by the National Executive (and the Elections Committee did not do so either), they (two publications) must be considered illegitimate and vagabond, and to that extent, must be discarded for lack of credibility.
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