Afari-Gyan to retire


… After 21yrs of dedicated service to mother Ghana

By Cletus Abaare

The much awaited news for those craving to see the Ghana’s Electoral Commission (EC) Chairman, Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, out of office is now here , as the walking encyclopaedia of the EC, would happily retire next year, December 18, 2014, after 21 year of active service to mother Ghana. Your authoritative, The Crystal Clear Lens can confidently reveal.

Sources close to the EC Boss told this paper with assurance that Dr Afari-Gyan has finished all the necessary preparations and would be presenting his retirement letter to the President of the Republic of Ghana, President John Dramani Mahama, just before the Christmas, which comes off on the 24th and 25th December.

“Dr Afari-Gyan has finished all the necessary preparations to proceed on his retirement that many people have been waiting to hear”, the credible sources told this paper.

The sources further disclosed that the EC Boss whom he described as the most intelligent and practical person ever to preside over the EC had wanted to resign immediately after the 2012 general elections to pave way for a new person to take over but was forced to stay to date because of the elections petition.

“The old man had already planned to resign as the EC’s boss immediately after the 2012 general elections. He even discussed it with some of his close friends that he wanted to go home and have rest after several years of working for the people of Ghana. But he was forced to continue with the work because of the elections petition by the NPP, challenging the 2012 General elections results”, the source noted

It would be recalled that few weeks ago, President Mahama hinted of the type of person who would step into the shoes of the outgoing Chairman of the Electoral Commission according to a daily graphic report.

According to the report, the President noted that a new EC boss, no matter the gender, would be a very competent person who would take Ghana’s democratic credentials to a higher level. This buttressed our sources of information that the president would have it difficult getting someone who can match up to the experience, intelligence both theorical and practical competence of the retiring EC boss to man the affairs of the EC.

President Mahama also assured Ghanaians that due process would be followed in appointing a successor to Dr Afari-Gyan.

He said the question on who would be the next EC boss should not be about gender but due process and competence which would be key in appointing a successor to Dr Afari-Gyan.

At a press conference in October, this year, the Ghana Bar Association (GBA) called on President Mahama to appoint a new chairman for the EC to boost the image and credibility of the commission ahead of the 2016 elections.

According to the GBA, “All Ghanaians will be looking for in the new chairman of the EC is one who is perceived as capable and just; a person of integrity and one who will not pander to political pressure from any quarters whatsoever.”

Brief History Of The Out-Going EC Boss
Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan (born 18 June 1945), is the chair of the Electoral Commission of Ghana. He is a Ghanaian academic, political scientist and an Election Administrator.
Afari-Gyan was born at Anyimon in the Brong-Ahafo Region of Ghana. He attended Achimota School and Adisadel College for his A Level and also graduated from the University of Ghana in 1967 with a BA degree in philosophy.

He went on to attain a MA degree in African politics in 1969 from the same university. He also studied in the United States where he was awarded a Ph. D. in Political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1974.
Afari-Gyan worked as a lecturer and professor in political science at the University of Ghana. He has also lectured in the United States and Nigeria. He was a member of the Committee of Experts that drafted the Fourth Republican Constitution for Ghana.

In 1992, he was appointed Deputy Chairman of the Interim National Electoral Commission by the then PNDC, which was ruling as a military junta, with the hope of returning the country to civilian rule.

His job was to ensure that the November 1992 presidential election and the December 1992 parliamentary elections were free and fair. Jerry John Rawlings, the Chairman of the PNDC, who was also Head of State, stood and won the elections.

With the coming into force of the Fourth Republican Constitution, a new Electoral Commission was set up and Afari-Gyan became its first substantive chairman. He has successfully supervised all the Ghanaian elections held under this constitution so far.

He has successfully chaired the conduct of presidential and parliamentary elections in 1993,1996, 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012, overseeing all democratic elections for almost 21 years.

In all these, a number of unofficial institutions attempted to declare the results of these elections, with Afari Gyan stating that these results could not be trusted.

In 1998, he became the Executive Secretary of the Association of African Election Authorities. He was also member of a committee of experts to advice Nigeria on elections.
Other activities
He has also worked in a large number of other African countries, and has written several books. He was currently the star witness for the Electoral Commission of Ghana which was the 2nd respondent in the Electoral petition of the 2012 elections which the New Patriotic Party filed after 2012 general elections.

source : The Crystal Clear Lens