Former President John Mahama has said he and other people who have expressed reservations with the results declared by the Electoral Commission following the recently-held polls, are being impressed upon to let go.
“Increasingly, many of us who are attempting to understand how the Electoral Commission arrived at the results of this last election are being advised to forgo the issue—in the interest of peace”, Mr Mahama revealed in an address on Wednesday, 30 December 2020 in which he explained why he decided not to concede and, thus, has gone ahead to file a petition at the Supreme Court for a rerun of the polls.
“We are being reminded that Ghanaians are a peace-loving people and that Ghana, unlike many other nations on our dear continent of Africa, has not succumbed to war or been plagued with violence”, he said.
The presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), noted, however, his decision to challenge the results is grounded on principle.
“As a former president of the Republic of Ghana, a country that I love dearly, I am here to assure you that I know what it is to act in the interest of peace”.
“I have always done so without reservation or hesitation”, he said.
“I know what it is to contest an election, and to have the good people of this country choose my opponent to serve as their next president. I know what it is to concede. I have done so before. In 2016 when the election was not called in my favour, I conceded. I conceded in a congratulatory call to my opponent. And then, not long after that, I conceded in a public address to the good people of Ghana.
“I conceded not simply in the interest of peace and democracy, but because I respect the will of the people. I did then, and I do now.
“So, when I say that I will not concede this election, please know that I have not taken this decision lightly; understand that it is not because of a desire for power, but because of a dedication to principle and a commitment to democracy”, he noted.
Read Mr Mahama’s full speech below:
STANDING ON PRINCIPLE
AN ADDRESS BY HE JOHN DRAMANI MAHAMA, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE OF THE NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS
Wednesday 30th December 2020
Good evening ladies and gentlemen, fellow Ghanaians, my Brothers and Sisters. Let me begin by wishing you all Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.
I am speaking to you, my countrymen and women, today because I would like to address a few of the issues that have come up since the December 7 election, particularly the issue of how best to proceed—for me, as a candidate; and, I believe, for us, as a nation.
Increasingly, many of us who are attempting to understand how the Electoral Commission arrived at the results of this last election are being advised to forgo the issue—in the interest of peace.
As a former president of the Republic of Ghana, a country that I love dearly, I am here to assure you that I know what it is to act in the interest of peace.
I have always done so without reservation or hesitation. I know what it is to contest an election, and to have the good people of this country choose my opponent to serve as their next president. I know what it is to concede. I have done so before. In 2016 when the election was not called in my favour, I conceded. I conceded in a congratulatory call to my opponent. And then, not long after that, I conceded in a public address to the good people of Ghana.
I conceded not simply in the interest of peace and democracy, but because I respect the will of the people. I did then, and I do now.
So, when I say that I will not concede this election, please know that I have not taken this decision lightly; understand that it is not because of a desire for power, but because of a dedication to principle and a commitment to democracy.
Based on the irregular and inconsistent results that were reported, I have reason to doubt that this election was free, or fair, or transparent. And without those fundamental pillars in place, how can any of us be sure that the results announced truly represent the will of the people? My Brothers and Sisters, I stand here today to remind you that Ghana is a peaceful nation precisely because Ghanaians have always stood on principle. We have always fought for our democracy.
Our forefathers and foremothers have always understood that without this basic foundation, whatever peace exists in our country will not be lasting; whatever liberation we have as the architects of our collective future will soon be lost.
Whenever we decide to take the easiest road, the first step is always surrender. And, often, the thing that we lose is the very thing that we value the most.
The freedom that we enjoy today was not given on a silver platter. It came at a price. It came because our forefathers and mothers stood on principle. Our history books are filled with the names of individuals who refused to take the road that was the easiest, or safest, or most convenient. They refused to surrender their ability to appeal for justice in a land where they were meant to have a voice and use it for the betterment of themselves and their children and future generations.
All who fought for independence stood on principle to demand the sovereignty of this land that belongs to us, the people of Ghana.
Indeed, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah once said, “Those who would judge us merely by the heights we have achieved would do well to remember the depths from which we started.”
There are many of you who are listening to me this evening who have spent your entire lives knowing only democracy. You know a Ghana in which every four years the citizens go to the ballot box to exercise their right to choose leaders who they believe will best serve their interests. You know a Ghana in which the baton of power has been passed graciously, and without incident, from one party to another; a country with hundreds of radio stations and dozens of newspapers; a country where citizens can openly critique the performance of their elected officials; a country where they can protest peacefully, and without fear of punishment.
Also listening tonight are many of you who remember a different Ghana. In that Ghana, most, if not all, of those political traditions and social liberties I spoke of earlier did not exist: the airwaves were not filled with radio stations; there were not numerous newspapers; people held their peace because to complain about the people in power was to risk all manner of reprisals.
In that Ghana, presidential terms were interrupted by coups, and former heads of state were executed. There was kalabule, and Operation Feed Yourself, not to mention years of hunger, bushfires, drought, and one economic recovery programme after another. Even the Ghana of the Kume Preko demonstrations bear little resemblance to the Ghana of today.
We have travelled quite far as a nation in such a short period of time.
The road has not been easy, nor has it been absent of obstacles. That is why our beloved nation, Ghana, is often referred to as a trailblazer on the African continent.
With each achievement, we have grown stronger—as a people, and as a nation. Through these trials and tribulations, our democracy has also been strengthened.
My Brothers and Sisters, in a democracy as strong as ours, peace and justice can—and, in fact, they usually do—coexist. And that is because in a democracy such as the one we have built in Ghana; it is the people who hold the power.
Indeed, in 2012 when the election was called in my favour, my opponent challenged the results—as was his right; and he took the matter to court. Eight long months of an election petition, far from destroying our democracy, rather reinforced our commitment to it—and affirmed the strength of our institutions, particularly the judiciary.
It is only in governments where the people are powerless, and at the mercy of those who hold office, that peace—or at least what passes as peace—can exist without justice. Some people have asked me what I hope to gain by challenging the results of this election.
Let me tell you: I want, perhaps, the very same thing that my opponent wanted when in 2012 he challenged the results of that election; I want the removal of doubt. I want for all of us to know that our elections should be free, fair, and safe—and that we do not have to settle for a process that leaves us confused, and with more questions than answers.
I want a Ghana where institutions of state can be held to account. Where we can stand on principle and demand transparency without the risk of losing our lives.
When people lose their lives—as seven people did—in the course of our elections, we are moving backwards not forward; we are unraveling the very fabric of our democracy; we are risking the loss of three decades worth of progress. When today we see armed military and militia in our collation centres and election outcomes declared at the point of a gun, for us who have witnessed our country’s journey through all its post-independence travails, we wonder if we have truly exorcised the ghosts of our tortuous past.
We must continue to be a nation in which our young citizens have faith in our institutions, trust the rule of law, and rely on the presence of peace because there is justice.
Ghana must be a country where we citizens know and believe, without any doubt whatsoever, that the way forward is determined by the will of the Ghanaian people. And that we can hold our institutions of state accountable and guarantee that they work in favour of the national interest and not in the interest of the administration or person in power.
That is what I want. This is why earlier today, my lawyers filed a petition in the Supreme Court of Ghana challenging the declaration of the results of the December 7, 2020 Presidential Election made by Mrs. Jean Mensa, the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission.
I have been compelled to do this because of her clear failure to act in accordance with the Constitution.
I thank you for your kind attention.
May your New Year be one of good health and prosperity. May God bless each of you, and may God continue to bless our homeland, Ghana.
Keep your receipts because I’ll audit COVID-19 Funds – Mahama to Akufo-Addo
Keep your receipts because I’ll audit COVID-19 Funds – Mahama to Akufo-Addo
Mr. John Dramani Mahama has indicated he will audit the COVID-19 fund that has been created to finance activities relating to the fight against the pandemic.
He cautioned all persons who use the funds to keep their receipts because “the day of accountability will come”.
The government of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo created the COVID-19 Trust Fund to solicit funds from the general public to help fight the pandemic.
The Fund, according to President Akufo-Addo has accrued GH₵8,750,000.
“I’m very grateful to individuals and institutions who have responded to my appeal for donations to be made into the COVID-19 National Trust Fund. A total amount of some 8,750,000 cedis which includes 600,000USD has been received.
“I’m happy that so many appointees of my government have also followed my example by donating their salaries to the fund,” President Akufo-Addo said.
But in a Facebook Live presentation on Thursday April 23, Mr Mahama called on Ghanaians to demand accountability in the disbursement of the Funds.
“I don’t think I need to become President before we demand accountability. All those spending the COVID-19 money should be keeping the receipts because the day of accountability is fast approaching,” he said.
He added: “Let us all join hands in demanding accountability and transparency from the government in the management of the COVID-19 funds, after all these are public funds contributed by tax payers.
“I am passionately appealing to the government to ensure a timely release of these funds to the institutions, health and non-heath, so that they can discharge their duties appropriately and according to plan.”
Read FULL JUDGEMENT of the 2020 election petition
Read FULL JUDGEMENT of the 2020 election petition
The Supreme Court, by a unanimous decision, has affirmed the victory of President Akufo-Addo in the 2020 presidential election.
“The petitioner has not produced any evidence to rebut the presumptions created by the publication of CI 135 for which his action has failed. We have, therefore, no reason to order for a rerun … we accordingly dismiss the petition as having no merit,” Chief Justice Anin-Yeboah ruled.
With this unanimous, seven-member decision, the Supreme Court dismissed the petition.
The court determined that the petitioner had based his case on an error made by the chair of the Electoral Commission during the declaration of the election result on 9 December 2020, but that the error could not void the will of the people in electing a president.
The Supreme Court also held that the error made by the EC in using total votes cast as the basis for reckoning the total valid votes during the declaration was corrected, and that the correction was made in accordance with the law.
Read full judgement below:
Tell us how you bought those two V8 Land Cruisers – Asawaase NDC youth pour their anger on Sammy Gyamfi
The youth of the opposition National Democratic Congress in Asawaase constituency in the Kumasi Metropolis have written a cold catching open letter to the party’s national communication officer Mr. Sammy Gyamfi for attacking the honorable Speaker of parliament Mr. Alban Bagbin, Hon. Muntaka Mubarak, and Hon. Haruna Iddrisu after parliament approved three NPP ministerial nominees which included Hon. Kwadwo oppong Nkrumah, Dr, Owusu Akoto Osei, and Hon. Hawa Koomson who were disapproved at the appointments committee level.
After the speaker of parliament delivered the results of the voting to the plenary which outrightly favored these contentious ministerial appointees, the party’s national communication officer took to his Facebook wall to denigrate the integrity of the party’s leadership in the parliament. He wrote on his Facebook wall;
Comrades, the betrayal we have suffered in the hands of the Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Alban Bagbin, the leadership of our Parliamentary group, particularly Hon. Haruna Iddrissu and Hon. Muntaka Mubarak, and dozens of our own MPs, is what strengthens me to work hard for the great NDC to regain power.
They brazenly defied the leadership of the party and betrayed the collective good for their selfish interest. And we, must not let them succeed in their parochial quest to destroy the NDC, the party that has done so much for them and all of us. The shame they have brought on the party will forever hang like an albatross around their necks.
These are hard times for all of us but we should not let the betrayal of a few quench our love for the great NDC.
Rather, let it strengthen us to fight for this party. We all have an equal stake in this party. They are few, we are many. Some have sold their conscience but ours is intact.
And we, can work together to rebuild the party from the ashes of 3rd March, 2021, which I call “Black Wednesday ”- Our day of self-inflicted shame.
This is the time for us to insist on the right changes in the leadership of the NDC group in Parliament or forget about them completely. The current leadership have lost their moral authority to lead and are not fit to sit on the front bench of the NDC side of the house.
More importantly, it’s about time we understood, that we don’t have any NDC Speaker of Parliament. No we don’t! We have a Speaker who rode on the back of the NDC into Office to pursue his own parochial agenda and nothing more. You trust them, at your own peril.
The hypocrites can choose to remain quiet or even condemn us for speaking up, so they can remain in the good books of the renegades. But I and all who are pained by this act of betrayal will not keep quiet, because we don’t fear anyone and don’t wish to be in their good books. If they can defy the party leadership and interest openly and subject all of us to public ridicule, then they can and must also be called out openly. The NDC party is supreme and it must be cleansed.
Speak up, we can and must! And let nobody stand in our way. But, when all is said and done, let’s work for the NDC with all our might and strength. Quench not your love for the party. Hope must not die. This storm shall pass. The NDC will survive and shall bounce back stronger for victory. So I say to you, be strong!
*Sammy Gyamfi Esq.*
In replying to Mr. Gyamfi’s fierce comment, the party’s youth in the Asawaase constituency led by the constituency’s Director of Communication have written to Sammy Gyamfi asking 3 critical questions that bother on his integrity. They wrote;
Comrades, the so called statement of betrayal by Sammy Gyamfi has come to our notice.
If one is to talk about betrayal, it is the leadership of the NDC party in which Sammy Gyamfi is part that has betrayed us. It is the leadership of the party that is not being truthful to us and betraying us, not our hard working MPs.
The leadership of the party held meeting with the leadership of the MPs caucus, they presented all their challenges in parliament as far as this voting of nominees are concern, as a vibrant communication officer as you claim you are, wouldn’t it have been prudent enough for you to make us aware of the reality on the ground than trying to incite us against our MPs?
So if you have failed to assume your responsibility as per your rules of engagement please accept it for us to move on. Come to think of it, you can’t be more Catholic than the Pope.
You can’t be more NDC than The speaker of parliament, Hon. Muntaka Mubarak, Hon. Haruna Iddrisu and other hard working NDC MPs.
As you are touting yourself with integrity than these hard working NDC MPs with rich experience in which you yourself know is not true and can’t be true with unsubstantiated allegation.
We would like to caution you to desist from this undeserving misconduct of a national officer of our great party, more importantly, the barrage of attacks on our hard working Member of Parliament, Hon. Muntaka Mubarak and his colleagues.
Mr. Sammy Gyamfi if you live in a glass house don’t throw stones and if you can’t take blow please don’t throw blows, let us have some integrity test for us to see if you will indeed pass this test for “he who comes to equity must come with clean hands”;
1. Can you tell us with all honesty a company or an institution in Ghana that you have worked with before possessing all that you have today and at what salary base Mr. Integrity?
2. What do you do for a living now to lead the kind of life that you are having?
3. You have two (2) V8 Toyota Land Cruisers; can you tell us how you bought those cars and for how many years of service to a company or an institution if any?
Just to mention a few.
Sammy Gyamfi enough of your baseless and misplaced outburst, if there are people who have contributed immensely to our failure as a party in election 2020 which subsequently left us with bruises, then there is no other people than the people of which you are part of.
Instead of you to concentrate on reorganizing the party, you are rather blowing the trumpet of divisions and attacks on our own. If other constituencies will allow you to do that, please we at Asawase Constituency will not allow you! Not at all! You can’t sit somewhere and mislead us.
It won’t happen! So trek with caution.
Director of Communication Asawase Constituency
Meanwhile, honorable Muntaka on his radio station in Kumasi Zuria FM has warned Sammy Gyamfi not to enter his territory with his crass arrogance and disrespect.
However, we are yet to witness any reactions from the speaker as well as hon. Haruna.
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