Politics of Friday, 9 November 2012
Source: The New Crusading Guide
An independent Presidential aspirant called Onyameba Raymond John Atta-Kesson whose attempt to pick the Presidential nomination forms for his candidature was met with rigorous frustrating ploys by the Electoral Commission (EC) has held a press conference in Accra to iron out his differences with the Commission over what he perceives to be a grand scheme intended to thwart his efforts as a young independent candidate.
Addressing the media at the International Press Centre, Onyameba gave a blow-by-blow account of how some officials at the Electoral Commission frustrated him in his endeavour to stand as an independent candidate for the upcoming general elections in December.
He recounted that on the opening of the nominations by the EC, he was in the UK on a campaign tour within the Ghanaian communities and had asked his National Campaign Coordinator, Mr. Dominic Ankombea to collect nomination forms on his behalf – only for a certain Kwame Kay, Assistant Director of Elections at EC to refuse him the forms saying that the candidate needs to introduce himself in writing and in person to collect the forms.
Onyameba said, on that note, he proceeded to the EC himself on the 11th of October 2012 but “was met with loads of frustrating questions without substance such as “how old are u?, when I stated 41, then he asked again, do you have Gh¢ 10,000 to file”?, when I responded yes, Mr. Kwame Kay, then informed me in the presence of my National Campaign Coordinator, that the Presidential Nomination forms could not be released to an Aspirant, if the Chairman or his Deputy were not available.”
Onyameba further narrated, “Kwame Kay informed me that the Chairman of the EC and his Deputy were the only persons who could approve my logo. However, at his own discretion, he objected to the colours of my logo and insisted that I had to bring a new Introductory Letter with an amended logo.”
He said he and his National Campaign Coordinator went back to the EC the following day with full expectation of collecting the nomination forms but shockingly, “despite presenting an amended logo, we were again told that we could not be given the nomination forms simply because the Chairman of the EC and his Deputy were not in.”
The independent presidential aspirant continued that he had alerted Kwame-Kay that if the forms were not released to him on the Friday 12th October 2012 it would virtually be impossible for them to use just three days which was from the Monday 15th to the 18th October 2012 deadline to collect all the signatures they required across the country but he “rudely asked us (myself and my National Campaign Coordinator) to leave his office with the excuse that he did not want to answer specific questions because he doesn’t want to be quoted.”
Onyameba noted that the electoral Commission of Ghana, despite its many years of experience, has been fraught with many allegations this year (including bribery) which even led to the arrest of certain EC officials.
He however stressed that “despite being one of the seven aggrieved Presidential Aspirants in the 2012 process, I firmly believe that Dr. Kwadwo Afari Gyan and the EC still have the capacity and experience to conduct a free and fair general elections this year,” whilst calling on the other “seven of us who feel unfairly treated by some EC officials, not to allow our personal interest to side-track the EC from concentrating on delivering its constitutional obligation.”
Quizzed as to whom he will most likely throw his weight behind in the upcoming elections, Onyameba who was rather brief answered that “in the next Presidential Debate, if a candidate emerges to be fully committed to securing the common national interest of all Ghanaians, I will keenly encourage my supporters nationwide to vote for that individual.”