• In a 26-second video, a female MP could be heard congratulating the MP whose qualification has become a subject matter for the court.
• On Wednesday, the Cape Coast High Court granted an injunction restraining the MP-elect, James Quayeson, from being among his peers because he holds dual citizenship.
• A private citizen and a resident of Assin Berekum, Micheal Ankomah, Nimfah filed a suit at the Cape Coast High Court challenging the qualification of Mr Quayeson as the MP-elect for the area.
Despite being restrained by the Cape Coast High Court not to hold himself as the MP-elect, James Quayson, the Assin North newly-elected legislator, has joined his peers in the House to be sworn-in.
Draped in white, Mr Quayson was among the National Democratic Congress (NDC) MPs who forcibly took the right side of the chamber designated for the Majority.
In a 26-second video, a female MP could be heard congratulating the MP whose qualification has become a subject matter for the court.
“Member of Parliament for Assin [North] congratulations. Give me two sure,” the female voice said.
Mr Quayson said “thank you” in response before flashing the victory sign- a symbol of the NDC’s 2020 campaign.
On Wednesday, the Cape Coast High Court granted an injunction restraining the MP-elect, James Quayeson, from being among his peers because he holds dual citizenship.
A private citizen and a resident of Assin Berekum, Micheal Ankomah, Nimfah filed a suit at the Cape Coast High Court challenging the qualification of Mr Quayeson as the MP-elect for the area.
The mason averred that at the time Mr Quayeson filed his nomination he was still holding onto his Canadian citizenship. He failed to denounce his citizenship as required by law.
Ghana’s laws bar dual citizens from holding public offices in Ghana.
In freezing the MP Elect right to be in Parliament, the judge said: “the allegation contained is of grave nature and he could not hold himself as MP-elect.”
Also, the NDC MP-Elect did not have the renunciation certificate to present before the court to confirm that he had indeed renounced his Canadian citizenship.
Although court documents showed the MP-Elect received his certificate on November 26, as at the time he filed his nomination, he did not have the requisite qualification.
The judge, Kwadwo Boakye Tawiah described the process of getting the certificate as purely administrative and held that he should have obtained the certificate before filing for his nomination.
The governing New Patriotic Party, on December 23, 2020, sought to o trigger a by-election by challenging the eligibility of James Quayson to contest in the Assin North parliamentary elections which he won.
Legal practitioner, Gary Nimako, had asked the Ghana Immigration Service to confirm if indeed the NDC MP-elect had renounced his Canadian citizenship before the December 7 parliamentary elections.
It is not clear what the outcome produced but the MP-elect would be deemed to be ineligible to contest as Ghana’s law does not allow dual citizens to contest in national elections.
The political hunt for post-election seats
The results of this search could be game-changing for the NPP and NDC after the 2020 parliamentary elections produced a hung parliament.
With 137 MPs apiece, the NPP and NDC are sniffing around any results that could be successfully challenged which would then break the historic tie.