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General News of Sunday, 17 May 2020

Source: Peace FM

Coronavirus: Elections will be held, whether we like it or not - Kweku Baako

President Akufo-Addo's tenure will end on January 6, 2021, and many are wondering what is going to happen should the Electoral Commission not be able to conduct elections due to the outbreak of coronavirus.

Will President Akufo-Addo still be president? Will there be an Executive Instrument to extend the President's time in office? These are some of the questions on the minds of Ghanaians.

Articles 63 and 112 of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana talk about the holding of presidential and parliamentary elections.

Article 63(2)(a) requires the presidential election to take place “…not earlier than four months nor later than a month before the term of office expires,” while, per article 112 (4), parliamentary elections must be held ‘within thirty days before the expiration of a Session of Parliament.’

Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu speaking on the floor of parliament said there is the need to invite the Electoral Commission to provide a roadmap on how elections are going to be conducted in the face of COVID-19.

“The independent EC, created under Article 45 of the Constitution, owes members of this House and Ghanaians a duty, hence they must be summoned to appear before the House to give their roadmap as to their preparedness in view of COVID-19," he recently said.

Reacting to this on Peace FM’s morning show 'Kokrokoo', the Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide newspaper, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako believes no matter what happens, elections will be held.

"if there is a regime of lockdown or restriction of a certain nature; the EC would have to work within that framework. If there is a serious type lockdown, I will find it difficult for the EC to embark on new registrations; we would have to find ways of finetuning the old one and see how best we can move forward...whether we like it or not, December elections would have to come on; that's a constitutional requirement; by 7th January, we will have no President if we do not hold an election and the Akufo-Addo I know will not for a second hold on to power...heads or tails there will be a swallow...," he indicated.

According to him, "previously I was for a new register, but with our current situation, we ought to be careful, cautious and creative all within the contest that there must be an election whether we like it or not".

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