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ECOWAS Court of Justice to settle electoral disputes

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The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Court of Justice will play a crucial role in resolving electoral disputes within the member states of the ECOWAS community. 

The Head of Legal Services and Research of the court, Apraku Nketiah, who made this known at a town hall meeting in Accra yesterday, said in the context of electoral disputes, the ECOWAS Court of Justice had the authority to adjudicate cases related to violations of electoral rights, irregularities in electoral processes and challenges of the outcomes of elections in ECOWAS member states.

The court serves as a judicial institution that is responsible for interpreting and applying the provisions of the ECOWAS Treaty and other relevant legal instruments within the region.

The town hall meeting was part of the court’s sensitisation mission to Ghana aimed at engaging citizens and raising awareness of the existence of the court and its functions.

Role

The court has the mandate to hear cases brought before it by individuals, political parties or other entities contesting electoral processes and outcomes.

 It can address issues such as alleged violations of electoral laws, unfair treatment of candidates and disputes over election results.

It is also tasked with safeguarding the rights of citizens to participate in free, fair and transparent electoral processes.

 It aims to ensure that electoral rights are upheld and that individuals have access to effective legal remedies in cases of electoral disputes.

This year, aside from Ghana, four other ECOWAS member states will hold elections.

They are Burkina Faso, Senegal, Togo and Mali.

Support

A Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Kwaku Ampratwum, said the town hall meeting served as a vital platform to bridge the gap between the court and the citizens it served, thereby enabling a greater understanding of the Court’s mandate, functions and avenues for redress.

He said over the years, Ghana had demonstrated unwavering support for the ECOWAS Court of Justice through active participation in its proceedings, adherence to its decisions and collaboration with the court’s mechanisms.

“The nation’s proactive engagement exemplifies its dedication to upholding the rule of law and advancing justice within the region,” he said.

He said over the years, Ghana had demonstrated unwavering support for the ECOWAS Court of Justice through active participation in its proceedings, adherence to its decisions and collaboration with the court’s mechanisms.

“The nation’s proactive engagement exemplifies its dedication to upholding the rule of law and advancing justice within the region,” he said.

The deputy minister added that Ghana’s commitment served as a testament to the pivotal role the court played in promoting legal harmonisation and resolving disputes within the ECOWAS community.

Mission

As part of the sensitization mission, the team from the court last Wednesday held a similar event at the University of Ghana School of Law where they interacted with faculty members and students on the practices and procedures of the court, including filing of cases and representation.

Today, the team will have an encounter with members of the Ghana Bar Association in Accra to deliberate on enforcement of the decisions of the court and challenges as well as the relationship between the court and national courts.

The deliberation will also border on the human rights mandate of the court as well as its jurisdiction.

source by graphic news

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