When the Electoral Commission (EC) announced that, the filing fees for this year’s presidential and parliamentary elections was GH¢50,000 and GH¢10,000 respectively, a lot of political parties, took issues with the commission, yet when nominations opened and closed, seventeen people had filed to contest.
Democracy is an expensive business and anybody who wishes to partake in it, must be well endowed financially, so that when given the opportunity, they won’t launch their poverty on the national kitty.
There is a caveat to make things easy for any aspirant, wishing to contest for president and parliament, when you get a certain percentage, your deposit which is your filing fee, is refunded to you.
So before any of the political parties begin to complain, they should first assess their chances, before deciding to contest, in which case they will be losing the filing fees.
We cannot allow jokers into a serious space like politics, which is about the life, survival and the future of the people.
Since 1992, only two political parties, i.e. the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP), have made beyond the required percentage for a refund, yet at every election, we have more than six political parties contesting, including independent candidates.
This year, it looks like the numbers are going to be more than we bargained for and it is an expense to the tax payer, one that could be avoided, if we could just separate the wheat from the chaff.
There is no other way to bring sanity to our body politics, but through elimination by rough tactics. Everybody will quote the Constitution to justify their inclusion, the same Constitution, has clothed the EC, with certain responsibilities, we should allow the EC to exercise their
discretionary powers to get the jokers out of the deck.
Just going through the list of candidates who have already filed, and it tells what kind of country we are. No serious country on the face of the earth, will entertain some characters, no matter what the Constitution says.
But since they insist on wasting their money, despite the glaring evidence that, some of them won’t even get a 100 of the ballot votes in the whole country, why won’t they pay the GH¢50,000, because it is obvious they just want to waste their money.