The next National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration, according to former president John Dramani Mahama, will work to clarify the constitutional clause that prevents those with dual citizenship from holding political office in Ghana.
The former president claims that the ban on the Assin North MP acting in his capacity as a member of parliament amounts to unfairness and is an insult to Ghana’s democracy, depriving the constituency of representation in the legislature.
As part of his campaign swing in the Northern Region, he addressed hundreds of NDC members in Tamale, where he delivered these remarks.
“We have witnessed the 4th Republic’s cardinal sin the disenfranchisement of the SALL people. They have been without a member of parliament for an entire term. Leave that aside; the residents of Assin North chose someone to serve as their representative in Parliament. The Assin North MP has been placed under a restraining order because to the government’s manipulation of the judiciary. Therefore, although being the elected member, he is unable to carry out MP duties. That is a heinous injustice and a betrayal of our democratic process.
“But I want to assure the people of Ghana and James Gyakye Quayson, who is our MP for Assin North, that when NDC comes to power, we will clarify that constitutional provision that compels them to give up their foreign citizenship before they contest elections. A country’s human resource is its best resource. We happen to have three million of our citizens abroad, they have acquired skills and different talents. Why must we have a law that bars them when we have a dual citizenship law? We will clarify it, so they can come and stand for parliamentary seats and hold offices in Ghana, they don’t have to give up their other citizenships to be able to hold office,” Mahama said.
James Gyakye Quayson, a troubled Member of Parliament for Assin North, is currently engaged in a legal struggle after being charged with having a second citizenship before running for office in 2020.
The court recently prohibited him from holding office as an MP until the lawsuit that was filed against him was resolved on the merits.