23 For President

The race to the Flagstaff House has intensified, as 23 presidential hopefuls have so far picked nomination forms to contest in this year’s December 7 general elections.

Out of the 23 who have picked the forms, 16 are political parties and seven are independent candidates, including Jacob Osei Yeboah, Kwaku Antwi Owusu, Lawrence Yamil Nketia, John Alex Hamah, Major Ibrahim Rida (rtd), Kwame Asiedu Walker and Chief Dr Yaw Kumey.

The political parties are the National Democratic Congress (NDC), led by John Mahama; New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo; Convention People’s Party (CPP), Ivor Kobina Greenstreet; Progressive People’s Party (PPP), Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom; People’s National Convention (PNC), Dr Edward Nasigri Mahama; National Democratic Party (NDP), Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings and United Front Party (UFP), Nana Agyenim Boateng aka Gyataba.

The rest are Great Consolidated People’s Party ( GCPP), Henry Lartey; Democratic People’s Party (DPP), ‎Thomas Nuako Ward-Brew; Independent People’s Party (IPP), Kofi Akpaloo; Ghana Freedom Party (GFP), Akua Donkor; United Progressive Party (UPP), Akwasi Addai Odike; United Development System Party (UDSP), Richard Nixon Tetteh; United Love Party (ULP), Ramon Osei Akoto;  All People’s Congress (APC), Hassan Ayariga and Reform Patriotic Democrats (RPD), Kwabena Adjei aka Bambata.

The Electoral Commission (EC) on Tuesday, September 13, 2016, allowed interested political parties and individual candidates to pick nomination forms to contest in this year’s elections.

Presidential candidates are to pay a filing fee of GH¢50,000, while parliamentary candidates will pay GH¢10,000.

Dr Nduom’s PPP has, however, gone to court over what it called ‘killer fees,’ asking the court to cause a reduction of the fees.

Both the presidential and parliamentary candidates are required to return the nominations forms to the EC from September 29 to 30, 2016.

It’s not clear if all the aspirants would submit the forms upon paying the stipulated fees.

Charlotte Osei, Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, who was speaking at the launch of ‘A Guide to Candidates and Their Agents’ which was compiled by the commission, said this year’s elections will be very competitive.

This, she said, was due to the high level of interest shown in the picking of the nomination forms.

Mrs. Osei said, “For a democratic political system to be truly representative, voters need an electoral process that is imbued with integrity.

“Ensuring integrity in the electoral process demands that candidates, agents, voters and the electoral management body all conduct their activities in line with laid-down law and policies.

“This guide will help the various presidential and parliamentary aspirants and their agents to understand the requirements that they have to meet before they can be accepted as candidates in order to compete in these elections.”

In order to ensure integrity in the electoral process, she called on candidates, voters, agents, as well as the EC to conduct their activities in line with the electoral laws and policies.

Content Of The Guide
The Guide is divided into four parts. Part one contains guidelines on the process for becoming a presidential or parliamentary candidate, as well as other useful information for candidates.

Part two deals with the important role of polling agents, their duties and responsibilities, spelling out what they should do and what they should not do.

Part three gives general information about elections that will be useful for candidates and agents.

Also included in this volume as an appendix is a form that candidates or political parties can conveniently use to appoint polling and collation agents.

Part Four provides details on biometric and manual verification.

By Cephas Larbi


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