Jean Adukwei Mensa’s first Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting scheduled for Wednesday, as chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), suffered a jolt, when it was discovered that, she had traveled out of the country on a trip, officials at the EC are struggling to fathom.
The Herald, learnt from reliable sources that, Mrs. Mensa, is likely to return to Ghana, tomorrow.
While, some have said Mrs. Mensa was in Europe on a personal business, others have claimed that she had travelled to the US on an official assignment with the United Nations (UN).
The confusion as to whether she was going to be in town for the meeting, The Herald learnt is what led to the late invitation to the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the party’s subsequent boycott of the discussions on plans to organise a limited voter registration exercise, ahead of the referendum later this year, by party’s executives.
The late invitation, has led to a feud between the NDC and the newly appointed chairperson, playing out in public.
It is not clear, when the invitation to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) was extended but the governing party is yet to speak on the issue.
However, the NDC General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, has explained that they refused to attend the meeting because they got a late notice.
According to him, the invitation for the meeting came at 12:14 pm on Wednesday, while the meeting was at 1:00 pm same day.
He explained to Joy News’ Kwesi Parker Wilson that the first notice for the meeting came to him as a text message from the deputy communications director of the EC two days ago.
“The message did not contain any agenda and only stated that it was an emergency meeting,” he noted.
He indicated that, per the conventions of IPAC meetings, that was not a proper way to invite the NDC to the meeting.
“So we haven’t been invited,” he stressed.
He also noted that, the mode of invitation is a manifestation of the incompetence at the helm of the EC.
The NDC, vehemently opposed the controversial appointment of Jean Mensa as EC boss after the position became vacant, following the untidy impeachment of Charlotte Osei and her two deputies by people working with the Flagstaff House.
The party argued that, Mrs. Mensa, displayed political bias in her role as head of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA).
Her husband, Dr. Charles Mensah, is a known member of the NPP, he held positions in the Kufuor administration. Dr. Charles Mensa is the current Chief Executive Officer of Volta Aluminum.
He co-founded the IEA and placed his wife in-charge.
The Herald has information that, the some juicy state lands were sold to the family by the NPP administration, and it’s being use to construct a hotel in Cantonment in Accra.
The NDC boycotted some programmes organised by the Jean Mensa-led IEA for bias claims.
The EC, had called the meeting to make plans after it announced the roadmap to the referendum to create new regions; a campaign promise by President Akufo-Addo during the 2020 electioneering campaign.
The Commission, has set aside September 16 to 25 to conduct limited registration exercise and exhibition of the voters’ register in the concerned areas.
The commission announced that December 27, 2018, has been set for the referendum.
According to the communications director of the EC, the limited voters’ registration for the 45 districts in the six areas to be carved out, will be conducted online.
The EC, also noted that the modalities for the referendum, will soon be finalised and published and a Legal Instrument (LI) presented to Parliament once it reconvenes.
But the NDC, said it could not have shown up at the meeting with the time the invitation came.
Its National Organiser, Kofi Adams, said on Joy FM’s Top Story that they didn’t see the meeting as an emergency.
Even if it were, Mr Adams, said there are appropriate ways of inviting them to meetings that are deemed emergencies.
“It is unfortunate and the level of incompetence that has been exhibited by this EC is legendary. Never in the history of the working of the EC has political parties received an invitation to an important meeting such as this the way we have received it
“We’ve worked with Dr Afari Gyan, we’ve worked with Madam Charlotte Osei, this has not happened,” he added.