EC can declare Assin North seat vacant – Attorney-General

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The Attorney-General (AG), Godfred Yeboah, says the Electoral Commission (EC) can declare the Assin North Constituency seat vacant following the Supreme Court’s ruling.

On Wednesday the apex court, in a majority 5-2 decision, ruled that Assin North MP, James Gyakye Quayson, can no longer perform Parliamentary duties.

This implies that the people of Assin North will for the time not have a representation in Parliament.

Addressing the press following court proceedings, the A-G noted that if not for the “legal gymnastics” that had been employed by the lawyers for Mr Quayson, a by-election should have been conducted long ago.

He indicated that “the High Court has ruled, given a judgement and determined the status of the gentleman as not qualified to have stood for election and had actually cancelled the election conducted in the Assin North constituency. The Court of Appeal subsequently struck out his appeal for non-compliance with the rules of the Court of Appeal.”

He, therefore, said since there is no appeal pending, “the way is clear. In my view, there should be nothing in the way of the Electoral Commission to declare the seat vacant.”

The Supreme Court has ordered an expedited hearing and determination of the matter.

According to the Attorney-General, he is hopeful the Supreme Court hearing will also affirm all the laws that have been established by the courts.

Meanwhile, the ruling delivered is to be upheld until the determination of the substantive case filed against Mr Quayson at the Supreme Court.

Justices Dordzie and Nene Amegatcher held the minority view.

The case was heard by Justices Jones Dotse, Agnes Dordzie, Nene Amegatcher, Mariama Owusu, Gertrude Torkonoo, Prof Henrietta Mensah Bonsu and Emmanuel Y. Kulendi.

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