Former President John Dramani Mahama is destroying his international standing following his refusal to accept defeat after the December 7 elections and also failing to indicate whether or not he will go to court to seek redress, Dr Emmanuel Akwetey, Executive Director of the Institute of Democratic Governance (IDEG), has said.
Dr Aketwey explained on the Key Points programme on TV3 Saturday, December 19 that Mr Mahama was able to build a good image for himself within the international community when he accepted the results of the 2016 elections and also helped the Gambia and other West African countries to deal with issues affecting elections and outcomes and acceptance.
But, in his view, the conduct of Mr Mahama after the 2020 elections is eroding all these gains.
He told host of the programme, Abena Tabi that “The call on members of the NDC to demonstrate must be recognized and respected but it also has to be exercised within the law so that the Police will provide them with the protection they need and agent provocateurs won’t get in and so on.
“In demonstrations, you always have people who may not even be related to the NDC getting in to cause havoc. That is what I mean by the agents of provocation who might get in and create all sort of problems. They might come from vigilantes, so you stop going onto the streets.
“I think at this stage, from what I am gathering the demonstration without notice to the police and the reactions and the constant refusal or the delay in saying, we are going to court and calling your members out onto the streets especially after you sign a peace pact I think is damaging.
“It is damaging to the international standing of Former President Mahama especially because in 2016 he conceded and in spite of all his reservations, he led ECOWAS to go to the Gambia and deal with issues affecting elections and outcomes and acceptance.
“He was very critical in Burkina Faso when the army intervened and he was highly commended for that. Based on that stance, his international standing as a man who in spite of everything would hold on to the democratic principles, peace and stability, he has been leading one mission after the other.
“So this time has confused many. There have been calls from friends who are saying what has led to this? This is the man we looked up to.”
For his part, a Deputy Attorney General, Joseph Dindiok Kpemka, said on the same show that the street protests by the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) against the results of the 2020 general elections which the party lost, will not achieve anything,
He explained that the constitution of the Republic of Ghana spells out what an aggrieved person in an election should do in the event of the person disagrees with the results of an election as declared by the Electoral Commission.
The outgoing Member of Parliament for Tempane told host Abena Tabi that “The argument of the NDC is that the winner should have been His Excellency former President John Mahama. That was not granted by the EC. The EC went ahead to declare what were the set of facts to them after collation of all the 275 constituencies across the country.
“At that stage, when you are aggrieved by the conduct of the Electoral Commission and you want the results overturned, the streets will not assist you to overturn the results. Let us get that fundamental right.
“If they think that genuinely they have a case that is why everybody is saying if you want the election results as has been gazette to change in your favour, the only forum where you can state your grievances and get the issues dealt with will be the Supreme Court properly constituted.”
Meanwhile, the General Secretary of the NDC Johnson Asiedu Nketia has said the means by which the party will go to court to challenge the results of the presidential and parliament elections are being blocked.
He told TV3’s Komla Klutse in an interview that the party is being denied access to some pink sheets, the primary documents upon which the election results were declared, to enable them to put their case together for possible court action.
“We have to secure the means of going to court. Even the means of going to court and having the chance of winning is still being blocked by the tyrant.
“So why do you want to go to court when the person who knows that when you go to court you will need A, B, C and so we are blocking your means of getting there so that you cannot go to court. And then sycophants will be sitting outside and shouting go to court.
“If we have to go to court about Techiman, we can only go to court to challenge the results of Techiman as declared. We are being denied even the opportunity of sighting what results were declared when the law gives us an entitlement to a copy,” he said.
The main opposition party has been urged to resort the court to address its disagreements with the results of the elections.
For instance, US Ambassador Stephanie S. Sullivan met with former President John Dramani Mahama who was the presidential candidate for the NDC barely a week after he rejected results
The US Ambassador also met Mr Mahama’s running mate in the elections, Professor Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang, at the meeting on Thursday, December 17.
They “discussed the recent elections”.
The US envoy is said to have urged not only the 2020 Presidential Candidate and Vice Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) but also all political parties “to pursue legal channels for any electoral disputes and to preserve the peace in Ghana”.
Since Mr Mahama’s official rejection of the election results, which declared incumbent Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as the winner, his supporters have held scattered demonstrations across the country.
On Thursday after a group of supporters demonstrated near the headquarters of the Electoral Commission, Ghana (EC), 26 of them were arrested by the police.