The board chairman of think tank Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) has risen to the defence of his wife and Electoral Commission (EC) Chair, Jean Mensa.
Dr Charles Mensa said allegations that she is biased in favour of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) thus making her unfit for her new role as EC boss are baseless and unsubstantiated.
He told Joy News’ Kojo Yankson that the EC chair’s political preference should not be an issue, as long as she can do her job impartially.
“I ask people when they tell me she is a member of NPP or opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) ‘and so what?’ Because the question is not whether she is NPP or NDC but can she be independent and be fair to all the political parties?
“I think that is the issue, Afari Djan, Charlotte Osei as well as the Chief Justice all vote during the general elections, but question is can one be fair? That is Jean’s trademark,” he said.
The opposition NDC party registered its disappointment with President Akufo-Addo for nominating the former IEA boss as Electoral Commissioner.
Related: ‘Jean Mensa is pro-NPP, anti-NDC’ – Opposition kicks against EC Chair nominee
The General Secretary of the party, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, said they were in “shock and disbelief” when news of her nomination hit the airwaves.
They said in a press release that “until this appointment, the president had given assurance to the nation that the persons to be appointed into the Commission would be persons whose integrity and political neutrality would be above board.”
“For President Akufo Addo to proceed contrary to his earlier assurances to appoint a known pro-NPP and an avowed anti-NDC person like Mrs Jean Mensa to chair a commission which would organize elections involving the NPP and NDC as the main contenders defies all senses of decency, fairness and justice and amounts to a gross abuse of the discretionary powers of appointment vested in him by the Constitution of the Republic of Ghana,” the release stated.
But her husband said such pettiness is below what Jean brings to the table as EC Chair.
Dr Mensa said she exhibited that as Director of IEA “to the point where the NDC hierarchy felt very comfortable with her. She worked with them and sometimes she upset them. The same thing with the NPP, sometimes they love her other times they don’t”.
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