Clerk of Parliament under duty to inform EC about vacant seat – Deputy AG

“It is the duty of the Clerk of Parliament to notify the Electoral Commission about a vacant seat in Parliament."

Is allowance instantly strangers applauded

The Deputy Attorney-General, Alfred Tuah Yeboah, says the Clerk of Parliament has a statutory duty to to inform the Electoral Commission (EC) that the Assin-North seat in Parliament is vacant.

His comments follow the Supreme Court ruling yesterday, April 13, 2022, granting an injunction against James Gyakye Quayson, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin-North from holding himself as MP for the area.  

By a 5-2 ruling, the court said the application from Michael Ankomah Nimfah succeeds. 

Mr. Alfred Tuah Yeboah explained: “It is the duty of the Clerk of Parliament to notify the Electoral Commission about a vacant seat in Parliament. If the Clerk of Parliament is notified by the orders of the Court that Court ‘A’ has delivered judgment in favour of Mr ‘B’, he’s under a duty to notify the EC about the said vacancy but that is a discretion for him.

“But that discretion is not something that he can go round it because it is a statutory duty,” he quoted in an interview on a Joy Fm programme. 

He, therefore, urged the Clerk of Parliament to ensure the due processes are followed.

However, Gary Nimako Marfo, a member of the legal team of the plaintiff, says the EC cannot organise a by-election until the substantive matter is determined by the Court. 

His comments come in opposition to calls that the EC can hold a by-election after the Supreme Court ruling. 

"Well, I think that the EC would have to hold on to organizing a by-election and let this case be brought to finality by the Supreme Court in an expeditious manner. So that post whatever the Supreme Court says, it will inform all of us on the next step to take," 

“So clearly, as it stands now, I hold the humble view that James Gyakye Quayson will remain a Member of Parliament but cannot go to Parliament because he has been injuncted,” he said in an interview. 

The Court has directed parties to file submissions on the substantive matter, where Michael Ankomah Nimfah is seeking the interpretation of Article 94 (2a) of the constitution before April 25, 2022.