The Director of Electoral Services at the Electoral Commission (EC), Dr. Serebour Quaicoe has hit hard at presidential candidates complaining about the high cost of filing fees stating that such persons do not qualified to be presidents of the country if they cannot mobilize such amount despite the commission’s earlier statement that the GHC100,000 charges were as a result of the Cedi depreciation
“If you are applying to occupy the highest position in the country, you should be a good organizer and a good mobilizer. Hence if you can mobilize people to vote for you to become president, then they should be able to mobilize to get the money”. Dr. Serebour Quaicoe told Hello FM in Kumasi in an interview monitored by MyNewsGh.com.
The Electoral Commission at a press briefing earlier on Monday stated that presidential candidates for this year’s elections are required to pay GH¢100,000 as filing fees to enable them to qualify to take part in the elections. Parliamentary candidates are also required to pay GH¢ 10,000 which saw no increment.
Just after the announcement, some political parties including the NDC said the increment was too high equating it to the country’s democracy being put on sale.
Mr. Hassan Ayariga, leader of the All People’s Congress (APC) has also said the action by the EC show it has turned the country’s democracy into business whiles he described the commission as a “weak” institution.
The CPP has also made similar statements requesting the commission to reduce the fee.
Defending the amount charged by the commission, Deputy Chair of the EC Dr. Bossman Eric Asare said the amount was generous considering recent happenings.
However, speaking with Hello FM, Mr. Serebour Quacoe insisted that, anyone who thinks he/she can’t win the elections or can’t get 25% of the total votes cast does not qualify to be there because the constitution makes provision for the filing fee to be given back to candidates after having scored at least 25%.
“What the constitution state is that, after you have deposited your filing fee, and I believe anyone who goes for election is of the conviction that he will win. But the law sate clearly that for you to win an election you need to get 50% plus of the total votes cast but the law says even if you don’t win but get 25%, your money shall be given back to you. Therefore, the filing fee is a deposit”, he said.