The Majority Leader and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, has rejected assertions that one of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) contenders for the Assin North by-election, Charles Opoku, is not qualified to take part in the election.
According to the majority leader, this assertion is being driven by members of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), including the party’s National Communications Officer, Sammy Gyamfi, because Charles Opoku is not a voter in Assin North.
Speaking in an interview on Sompa FM on Monday, June 5, 2023, monitored by GhanaWeb, Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu explained that one can contest parliamentary elections in a constituency even if the person is not a registered voter there.
“Article 94 (of the Constitution) says: that subject to the provisions of this Article a person shall not qualify to be a member of parliament (MP) unless he is a citizen of Ghana, has attained the age of 21 years and is a registered voter.
“The person must be a resident of the constituency in which he stands as a candidate. So, the condition is that you have to be a Ghanaian, a registered voter and a resident of the constituency he wants to contest in. The person we are talking about meets all these requirements.
“Even if you are not a resident of the constituency, you must have stayed there for at least 5 years of the 10 years immediately preceding the election you what to contest in. You can even contest even if you are not a resident but are a native of the constituency,” he said in the Twi.
“If there are laws which go contrary to the constitution, those laws are null and void. This is what I can tell my little brother,” the majority leader and Member of Parliament for Suame added while referring to Sammy Gyamfi.
He also said that persons who do not pay their taxes, have been convicted of high crimes and own loyalty to other countries are disqualified from becoming MPs.
Meanwhile, two people will be contesting in the parliamentary primaries of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to choose the party’s candidate for the ensuing Assin North by-elections.
The two, Charles Opoku and Frederick Freeman Amoah-Kyei picked their nomination forms for the party's primaries which is scheduled for June 7, 2023, graphic.com.gh reports.
The Electoral Commission of Ghana has set Tuesday, June 27, 2023, for the by-election.
The National Democratic Congress has indicated that its candidate for the upcoming Assin North by-election, is the ousted Member of Parliament for the constituency, James Gyakye Quayson.
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