AG sued over removal of Charlotte Osei

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A Ghanaian, Fafali Nyonator, has sued the Attorney General over the removal of the Electoral Commission chairperson, Charlotte Osei from office.

In a suit filed on Tuesday, she is asking the court to declare that the committee set up by the Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo, to investigate separate complaints brought against the three commissioners at the Electoral Commission, exceeded their powers by recommending the removal of the commissioners, and that the recommendations in the report be declared null and void.

President Akufo-Addo on Thursday night announced in a statement that he had removed the Electoral Commission chairperson, Charlotte Osei and her two deputies upon the recommendation of a committee set up by the Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo, pursuant to Article 146(4) of the Constitution, to investigate separate complaints brought by some Ghanaian citizens.

Although government spokespersons have justified the move, some members of the opposition have challenged it.

The plaintiff, Fafali Nyonator, is seeking among the other reliefs “A declaration that the determination  by Her Ladyship the Chief Justice of a prima facie case pursuant to article 146 of the Constitution for the removal from office of the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission is inconsistent with article 130 (a) of the Constitution as by the said determination Her Ladyship the Chief Justice usurped the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to construe and/or define scope of application of the provisions of the Constitutions, particularly articles 44 (2) and 146 thereof.”

She is also seeking “an order of perpetual injunction restraining His Excellency the President of the Republic of Ghana from appointing any persons to the person of Chairperson of the Electoral Commission until that position has become lawfully vacant in accordance with proper processes and procedures as by law established.”

Charlotte Osei according to the Committee, blatantly breached procurement laws in the award of several contracts in her three-year period at the helm of affairs, prior to the 2016 elections.

Excerpts of the Committee’s report said it investigated six separate allegations of various procurement breaches, for which a prima facie case was established against Madam Charlotte Osei.

“All the six allegations leveled against Madam Charlotte Osei for which a prima facie case was established by the Honourable Chief Justice, relates to breaches to the Public Procurement Act, Act 663, as amended by the Public Procurement (Amendment) Act, Act 914” the committee’s report stated.

Her two deputy Commissioners were also accused of procurement breaches and financial malfeasance.

Meanwhile, the Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, has stated that the president would soon announce a replacement for Charlotte Osei.

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