Election Nerve CentreGhanaLegal

Court dismisses Ernest Norgbey’s move to scupper EC registration exercise

NDC MP’s application to scrap registration for new voters’ roll starting tomorrow gets thrown out by the high court

The high court in Adentan, a suburb of Accra, presided over by Justice Enyonam Adinyira, has dismissed an application by the NDC MP for Ashaiman, Ernest Norgbey, which was seeking to stop the Electoral Commission from carrying out registration to compile a new voters’ roll using provisions set out in Constitutional Instrument 126 of 2020 (CI 126).

During court proceedings today (29 June), the lawyer for the applicant, Baasit Bamba, argued that the court could not rule on the application because the reasons for the Supreme Court judgment in the NDC case are yet to be made public.

Counsel for the EC, Justin Amenuvor, on the other hand, argued that, comparing the reliefs in the case before the high court and that which has been determined by the Supreme Court, they are essentially the same. The high court, he argued, could proceed to rule on the matter.

Court decides

The high court signalled in its ruling that the reliefs the applicant, Ernest Norgbey, ws seeking are essentially the same as those that the National Democratic Congress was seeking in its action against the EC.

The NDC matter has now been determined by the Supreme Court and is therefore binding on the high court.

The high court consequently dismissed the application.

Reliefs sought

Norgbey was praying the high court for “a declaration that the Publie Elections (Registration of Voters) Regulations 2016 (CI 91), as amended by the Public Election (Registration of Voters (Amendment) Regulations 2020 (CI l26), does not confer on the Respondent the legal mandate to compile a new or fresh voters’ register for the conduct of the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary Elections”.

He also sought “a declaration that the current or existing voters register compiled by the Respondent pursuant to the provisions of the Public Elections (Registration of Voters) Regulations 2010 (CI 91) is the only lawful and valid register for the conduct of the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary Elections and any other subsequent public elections or referenda in Ghana until such time as the current or existing voters register or electoral roll is revoked by a law duly and validly made or passed by the Parliament of Ghana”.

The applicant also sought “an order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondent (EC), whether by itself, workers, representatives or any other person or body howsoever described acting for and on behalf of the Respondent, from compiling a new or fresh voters’ register for the conduct of the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary elections until such time as the Respondent is authorised to do so by a law duly and validly made or passed by the Parliament of Ghana”.

Wilberforce Asare

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