Deposed MP for Assin North, Joe Gyaakye Quayson, says he’s disappointed in the decision of the Supreme Court to get his records expunged as a Member of Parliament.
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court by a unanimous decision, ordered the Parliament of Ghana to expunge his name from its records as a Member of Parliament.
The Court ruled that the Electoral Commission acted unconstitutionally in allowing him to contest the 2020 Parliamentary Elections without proof that he had denounced his Canadian citizenship at the time he filed his nomination in October 2020 to contest the parliamentary elections in the Assin-North constituency.
Mr. Quayson stated, in a letter, that even though the Electoral Commission (EC) inspected his renunciation certificate in November 2020, prior to allowing him to contest the elections, according to the EC’s regulations, which the law presumes to be regular, the Court held that he should have offered this proof to the EC at the time of filing for his nomination and then applied the holding retrospectively to disqualify him.
He stated: “It is a matter of public record that I filed for the renunciation of my Canadian citizenship in December 2019. It is also a matter of record that I left Canada in February 2020. It is also a matter of record that as soon as I applied for renunciation of my Canadian citizenship and left Canada, I lost all the rights of Canadian citizenship. It is also a matter of record that I picked up my renunciation certificate from the Canadian Embassy in Accra in November 2020.”
He further stated that: “It is also a matter of public record that Canadian law does not say I owe allegiance to Canada, even after filing for renunciation. In fact, Canadian law is unequivocal that disavowal of allegiance is subjective and can be done at any time, including immediately after swearing the oath of citizenship. Thus, under Canadian law, I owed no allegiance to Canada at all material times.”
Mr. Quayson says, “I am, of course, disappointed by the Court’s decision. I am especially surprised that the Court now says that foreign bureaucrats now determine whether natural born Ghanaians have the right to contest for parliamentary elections in Ghana or not. Thus, a country that does not allow renunciation of its citizenship can bar a natural born Ghanaian, who has severed all relations with a country of acquired citizenship, from ever standing for MP.”
He, nevertheless, noted that he has turned the page on litigating this matter in the courts of justice and will now leave it (the matter) to the court of conscience, which Ghandi reminds us, supersedes all other courts.
He assures that the constituency remains his priority and he is helping to develop his constituency as it has always been.
The deposed MP for Assin North assured his constituents that nothing has changed, and he will work even harder than before to win their support and to attain the set goals.
“I thank the good people of Assin North, the leadership of the NDC, my attorneys, and the numerous Ghanaians, from all sides of the political divide, who have supported me during these turbulent times. Together, we must ensure that we build a progressive and inclusive society that does not treat any of our citizens as second-class citizens. May God bless our homeland Ghana, and bless my beloved Assin North Constituency and her people,” he ended the letter.
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