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General News of Friday, 28 October 2016

Source: Class FM

Our credibility is intact - EC

The Electoral Commission (EC) has debunked assertions that its credibility is now in question following an Accra High Court ruling that it erred by not granting Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom, flag bearer of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), an opportunity to correct anomalies on his nomination form before disqualifying him.

Shortly after the court ruling on Friday October 28, another disqualified aspirant, the flag bearer of the All People’s Congress (APC), Hassan Ayariga, said the ruling put the EC’s credibility in question.

In a swift response, the EC said it had its credibility intact.

Speaking to Class News, the Head of Communications at the EC, Eric Dzakpasu, said the ruling had nothing to do with the EC’s credibility but a different interpretation of the law.

“This is not an issue of credibility; we are talking about the law. All that we do in the EC has got to do with the law - our understanding, our interpretation of the law, and how we implement the law. And it is because we can have varied interpretation or understanding of the law. That is why we have the judiciary as stakeholders in this business of elections to give interpretation when the need arises and the right of people to go to court to seek redress over these issues are also part of electoral dispute management. So, when we go to court with an issue and the judge in his wisdom gives a position, as a law-abiding institution, we study it, factor it into our programmes and processes and move forward because election is a collective business,” he stated.

“We have a position relating to the law. Some other person also has a position. That is why if the Electoral Commission goes to court and the ruling is in favour of the EC, it is not seen as a victory for the Electoral Commission. We’ve indicated that all these court cases are means of cleaning the electoral environment, streamlining issues before we go to the polls. So, it’s not a question of credibility. It’s a question of interpretation of the law and the extent to which we understand and abide by the law as stated by the judges. It has nothing to do with credibility.”

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