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Opinions of Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Columnist: Badu, K.

‘Only Fools And Horses Indeed’

Only fools and horses is the all time best British sitcom (situation comedy). The comedy show boasts of very funny and cunning characters. Interestingly, ‘Only fools and horses’ is analogous to the current Ghanaian political landscape. It has become extremely funny!

I have been following the comedy (Ghanaian political scene) with keen interest, and I must admit it is hilarious. For instance, the scene which followed the sudden death of our late President, Professor Mills, was out of this world. Just cast your mind back to the letter the dead man sent from the heavens about his celestial duties; it was simply unbelievable. I am still viewing the beautiful photographs of our late President professor Mills, sitting at the right hand side of Jehovah God. The heavens photographer is really good. To be quite honest, the only fools and horses characters are really good in what they do.

In fact, I was not enthused with the scene whereby the Electoral Commission carried out the registration of prisoners including homicidal scumbags like armed robbers and murderers. How bizarre? In fact, I was left in puzzled countenance in the sense that our brothers and sisters in Diaspora whose remittances help boost our economy have been denied the right to participate in the elections. May I ask the Electoral Commission: What is their crime? When the ‘ROPAB’ was passed some six years ago, you failed to implement, citing your inability to do so as a result of funds. Needless to say, you are able to gather funds to register prisoners. We also hear you are in the process of registering a few individuals abroad-including all embassies staff and students on government scholarships. If this is the case, then I daresay it is unfair on the rest of Ghanaians living abroad. Recently you were repudiating allegations of unfairness against you; if you think you are fair, show it!

Tell me, why some Ghanaians should be treated as second class citizen just because they are plying their trade abroad? As a matter of fact, it is damn wrong to register a section of Ghanaians abroad and leave the rest. If indeed the Electoral Commission has gone ahead and registered some Ghanaians abroad-government appointees, clearly, then, the EC has a case to answer in the near future. In any case, it is incumbent upon those of us who have been excluded from the registration exercise to engage in serious introspection. Let us come together and book a date with EC in the Law Courts! We shall one day meet the people at the helm of EC in the Supreme Court if they continue to exclude the rest of us from the voters registration exercise. They will explain to us why prisoners have the right to register and vote, and those of us living abroad have no right to do so.

I am in absolute puzzlement. EC is discriminating against those of us plying our trade abroad. I also think EC is breaking the law, in the sense that Act 699 of the Representation of the People's Amendment Law (ROPAL), which replaced the PNDC Law 284, directed the EC to register all Ghanaians who are qualified to vote. So, why are the people at the helm of EC mulishly sticking to the Pndc Law 284 which had been repealed and amended, and therefore does not exist? In any case, they will explain their actions when the time comes. Even if no one supports my intentions, I will definitely do “Bosman”. For those of you who are not privy to Bosman ruling in football, Bosman single handedly fought for the rights of footballers. Before Bosman ruling, footballers had no right to move on to any club of their choice after serving their contracts. Bosman took the case to European Court of Justice and won the case in 1995. He is a hero!

Let us remind EC that by seeking to register only government appointees and selected students on government scholarships, they may be flouting Article 296 which states: “Where in this Constitution or any other law discretionary power is vested in any power or authority, that discretionary power is deemed to imply a duty to be fair and candid”. In this vein, I urge EC to be fair to all Ghanaians.

K. Badu, UK.