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General News of Thursday, 29 October 2015

Source: Class FM

Afoko pops up at EC forum

Paul Afoko - embattled NPP Chairman Paul Afoko - embattled NPP Chairman

Paul Afoko has been spotted at the ongoing public forum on the electoral roll organised by the Electoral Commission to hear the views of political parties and civil society groups on the debate for a new electoral roll.

The suspended chairman of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) is at the forum despite his suspension. It is not clear if he is leading the NPP’s delegation or appearing as a mere member of the party.

Mr Afoko’s spokesperson insists his boss remains chairman. The first-ever elected northern chairman of the Danquah-Busia-Dombo family has, himself, described as “illegal,” the meeting convened by his deputy, Freddie Blay, at which the National Executive Committee unanimously upheld the suspension recommendation by the disciplinary committee.

Ahead of Thursday’s forum, General Secretary Kwabena Agyepong had told TV3’s Bridget Otoo in an interview that Mr Afoko will indeed be at the Alisa Hotel in Accra for the forum on the voter roll.

The EC has put together a five-member panel to moderate the forum. It is chaired by His Lordship Professor V.C.R.A.C. Crabbe, Co-Chair of the Coalition for Domestic Election Observers, (CODEO); former Justice of the Supreme Court of Ghana; former Professor of Law; and former Electoral Commissioner of Ghana.

The other are: Most Reverend Professor Emmanuel Asante, former Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church of Ghana, and Chairman of the National Peace Council; Dr. Grace Bediako, a former Government Statistician, and former member of the National Development Planning Commission; as well as Dr. Nii Narku Quaynor (a renowned computer scientist, Chairman of the National Information Technology Agency (NITA) Board of Directors and President of the Internet Society of Ghana); and Maulvi Bin Salih, Ameer of the Ahmadiyya Mission of Ghana.

The forum on the roll was necessitated by an advocacy by pressure group Let My Vote Count Alliance (LMVCA) and the NPP. They claim about 76,000 Togolese have found themselves on Ghana’s register. Flagbearer of the NPP Nana Akufo-Addo recently alleged in Amsterdam that the roll was bloated by more than two million names.

The NPP is attending the forum despite earlier urgings by Mr Akufo-Addo’s nephew, Gabby Asare-Otchere Darko, for a boycott a la the governing National Democratic Congress’ decision to boycott a similar forum organised earlier by civil society group Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA).

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