The woes of Hassan Ayariga, presidential aspirant of the All People’s Congress (APC), are not yet over, as the Electoral Commission (EC) has reported him to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) over a number of alleged criminalities he is said to have committed.
EC says the APC leader obtained his doctorate degree from a non-existent or unrecognized institution, among others.
Ayariga had insulted the EC chairperson, Charlotte Osei, calling her names after his disqualification from the presidential race was announced last week.
According to the EC, it detected about 30 anomalies, some bordering on criminality, which necessitated referring the APC leader’s case to the CID for investigations.
Ayariga had requested that the EC should return his forms to him to expunge the errors and replace them with new pages.
The commission indicated that the university in Spain cited by Hassan Ayariga in his nomination forms as his alma mater is non-existent, according to its search records.
A letter to the APC leader dated 18th October, 2016, titled: “Ref: Rejection Of Nomination As Presidential CANDIDATE Dr. Hassan Ayariga,” signed by Charlotte Osei, and copied to the Head of CID, a copy of which has been obtained from sources, stated in part, “Your personal records indicate that you attended Great Achievers University of Spain and you qualified with a PhD in Political Science in December 2014.
“However, we cannot find the said university and we would presume does not exist. However, there is a Great Achievers International Theological Seminary in Spain, which from our checks, does not award PhDs in Political Science. Please be advised further that an Honorary Doctorate Degree is not an educational qualification as required and stated on your nomination forms.”
The EC also pointed out that the inaccurate and false statements/submissions on Mr Ayariga’s personal records could be grounds for criminal prosecution.
“In addition, the signatures of some of your subscribers are questionable in our view (please see pages, 31, 104, 111, 108, 110) and require further investigation. Consequently, these and the other issues raised in this letter would be referred to the Ghana Police Service for further investigations,” EC averred.
Mr Ayariga, in a letter dated 17th October, 2016, had requested that the commission allow him to replace pages in his nomination forms, which the EC found unacceptable.
But the EC replied that it was unable to allow him to illegally and surreptitiously change pages in his already submitted nomination forms.
“Please be further advised that changes to nomination forms can only be legally made within the stipulated nomination period (See C.l. 94 Regulation 9 (2) and ‘Guide to Candidates and their Agents’ issued this year by the Commission).
“You would recall that after your submission on September 29, 2016, approximately 30 anomalies were detected on your nomination forms, and you were given the opportunity to correct same. With regards to the names of subscribers which you seek to substitute, those subscribers are clearly in breach of Regulation 7 (a) of C.1.94.
The law clearly states that ‘a person shall not nominate more than one candidate in a presidential election,” EC submitted.
According to the commission, such breach of the law was clearly not an anomaly that could be detected within the nomination period.
“By itself, such an irregularity can only be discovered when nominations have closed. Accordingly, the burden to do due diligence is therefore on the nominee to ensure that his nomination forms are subscribed to by persons with the requisite integrity who do not endorse more than one candidate.
“In addition, we wish to point out that our letter of October 7, 2016 specifying the grounds for your disqualification was not exhaustive of the infractions of the law contained in your forms,” the EC stated.