08 July 2016

Abu Ramadan’s suit was not in Ghana’s interest – PPP

abu ramadamAbu Ramadan’s suit against the Electoral Commission (EC) challenging the credibility of the voter’s register was not in the interest of Ghanaians, the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) has intimated.

According to the party, the suit presented to the Supreme Court and the subsequent order for the removal of people who registered as voters using NHIS cards as proof of Ghanaian citizenship, was irrelevant as the reliefs granted will not make the voters’ register credible.

Speaking to Citi News, National Secretary of the PPP, Murtala Mohammed, intimated that the Abu Ramadan suit was more in the interest of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP).

“The point is that it has nothing to do with the judgment and the court. It has everything to do with the interests. Don’t forget it is Abu Ramadan, Nimako versus the Electoral Commission, Attorney General cum NDC.

Abu Ramadan, Nimako cum NPP versus Electoral Commission, Attorney General cum NDC. It is the interest that we are trying to awake Ghanaians too. They are not in the interest of the state because what they are fighting for is not the solution,” he stated.

Dealing with minors, non-Ghanaians and deceased persons more important

According to Mr. Mohammed, the only way to truly ensure a clean register is to adopt the use of National Identification Cards as proof of Ghanaian citizenship for purposes of enrolling onto the voters’ register.

In his view, this would root out a more pertinent issue having to do with minors, non-Ghanaians and deceased names on the register.

“Why do you fight for national insurance registrants on the register when we have minors on the register? We have deceased people on the register and we have non-citizens. I am telling you that the argument is that, these numbers are more than the National insurance [NHIS] registrants.”

Abu Ramadan’s successful suit

The apex court ordered the EC to expunge from the current voters’ register the 56,000 persons it presented as having registered with the NHIS card as a proof of identity.

The ruling followed a suit filed by Abu Ramadan, and Evans Nimako, who in 2014 won a lawsuit that barred the use of NHIS cards for registration of potential voters.

The two, among other reliefs, wanted the current register declared inappropriate for the November polls. The ruling was a clarification of the court’s judgment on the voters’ register delivered on May 5, 2016.

The ruling resulted in many different interpretations with the EC stating that the court had not ordered an outright deletion.

Thus, Abu Ramadan went back to the Supreme Court to seek an interpretation of its earlier ruling on the validity of the current register.

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