We’ll vote in December amid covid-19 – Nana Addo
President Akufo-Addo says the December 7 elections must happen amid the deadly novel coronavirus pandemic adding that, the new voters’ registration exercise and conduct of the elections this year is non-negotiable.
According to him, the country’s 1992 constitution “makes no provision for the extension of the mandate of the President…beyond four years” for which reason, the December 7 elections cannot be put on hold or pushed forward.
Addressing the nation Monday night, June 29, 2020, he said to exercise executive power in Ghana, one must be duly elected by the people, saying “you must have their freely-expressed consent.
“We must vote on 7th December 2020, we cannot push it forward. That is not possible. Every individual must have their freely-expressed consent. On 7th January, 2021, when my mandate as the current President expires, a duly elected person must be ready to be sworn in as President of the Republic,” he stated.
He said going ahead with the conduct of the presidential and parliamentary elections will “forestall any needless constitutional controversy” that is likely to “throw our nation into jeopardy”.
Justification of military men along the borders
He further justified military deployments along the country’s borders amidst the compilation of the new voters’ register and the rising cases of COVID-19 infections.
According to the President, the deployment is to save the country against the intrusion of foreign nationals who have the potential of jeopardizing Ghana’s democracy and health efforts in these crucial moments.
“The longstanding deployment of security personnel, especially the military, along our borders is another dimension of this process of guaranteeing the peace of the nation. To shore up our borders against such attacks, and to defend our nation’s territorial integrity, the Armed Forces, at least since I came into office, have been very proactive in engaging in operations to secure our borders and foil any potential terror attacks on our soil. Deployments of soldiers in areas along our borders have been regular, and residents living in border towns will bear testimony to this”, he said.
I am not interested in disenfranchising voters
Commenting on suggestions that, the move is also to deliberately disenfranchise eligible voters so the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) wins the 2020 polls, Nana Addo who is also the NPP presidential candidate maintained that nothing will compel him to rig an election as being claimed by his opponents.
“I have no interest in disenfranchising any eligible Ghanaian from registering in tomorrow’s exercise, nor am I interested in any improper machinations to win any election. I have spent my life fighting for free, democratic institutions in our country, and I will continue in that fight for the rest of my life. The idea of being a President, who emerges from a rigged election, is abhorrent to every fibre of my being. I want to continue to be the President of a Ghanaian people who have given me their free consent, with the blessing of the Almighty.”