Senior Lecturer at the University of Ghana School of Law, Dr. Abdul Baasit Aziz Bamba says Ghana’s constitution provides for a fine of not exceeding 500 penalty units or a term of imprisonment [not exceeding two years] in the event of false publications during elections.
According to him, both constitutional consequences can however be imposed on a convicted person, contingent on the level of damage done by the publication.
Speaking to Joy News’ Samson Lardy Anyenini on ‘The Law’ Sunday, Dr. Bamba noted that the fine translates into a monetary amount of GH¢6,000.
“You may be asked to pay a fine of GH¢6,000 or you may be sent to prison for a maximum of two years. You can also be asked to both pay the fine and go to prison in addition”.
The Law lecturer was addressing the topic ‘Do’s and Don’ts on Election Day’, where he also noted that a person affected by such misinformation is likely to file a lawsuit on basis of defamation.
His comments come as part of efforts to mass educate, especially first-time voters, on basic electoral procedures and code of conduct.
According to the expert, such unconstitutional acts of misinformation may or may not affect the credibility of election results, in the eyes of electorates.
“If it is on a massive scale, and you could say that voting wasn’t done substantially in accordance with laid down rules or orchestrated by a false statement or an opponent, I can see a case being made to challenge the election result,” he said.