New Regions Referenda malpractices: NDC demands update on probe from EC

New Regions Referenda malpractices: NDC demands update on probe from EC

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has written to the Ghana Electoral Commission (EC) asking for an update on the investigation into the electoral

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The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has written to the Ghana Electoral Commission (EC) asking for an update on the investigation into the electoral malpractices recorded during the December 27, 2018 referenda for the creation of 6 new regions.

Persons believed to be electoral officials were captured in videos that went viral on social media engaging in electoral fraud with some thump printing ballot papers to allegedly ensure the percentage required for the creation of the new regions, particularly the Oti region was obtained.

The NDC in a statement after the exercise, condemned the act which they described as brazen violation of Ghana’s electoral laws and the general vandalization of due process and the principle of fairness that should govern the conduct of any credible election.

“We have been particularly shocked at the level of incompetence and dereliction of duty exhibited by the Electoral Commission under the leadership of Jean Mensah in the conduct of the just ended referenda. Compelling evidence has emerged showing clear electoral malpractices and shocking abuse of the process with the active participation and involvement of Election officials,” the NDC stated in a press release signed by Deputy General Secretary Peter Boamah Otokunor.

The party added, “We will follow closely the performance of the new leadership of the commission in subsequent elections including the District Assembly Elections. A repeat of this shambolic display will leave us no choice than to demand the resignation of Jean Mensah and her team.”

In response, the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Mensa said the Commission has taken note of the videos and promised to thoroughly investigate the contraventions.

“The Commission takes this seriously and has notified the regional directors and security agencies. I think it is important to emphasise that the Commission has as a hallmark of its operations, the principles of fairness, integrity and transparency in all its operations.

“We are waiting to hear from our officials and the security agencies on the line of action to take. We are not familiar with these officers, investigations are going on and… we also calling on members of the public to present any evidence that they may have to the commission and to the police. Once that is done, we will know the next line of action to take.”

“But I think it is important to emphasise that the commission will not shield any person whether permanent or temporary staff who is found to have violated the law and I think it is important we put that on record,” Jean Mensa asserted as she addressed the media on the outcome of the referendum.

But after waiting for almost three months without actions, the NDC is reminding the EC to honour its promise of investigating the allegations.

“… the commission reacted by promising swift and thorough investigations into all these allegations in order to take corrective actions to forestall their recurrence in future elections… Owing to the enormous importance attached to the need for a free, fair, transparent and credible elections, and the spirit of accountability, we write to request for information on the status of the investigations into the electoral malpractices that characterized the referenda, and the outcomes and/or recommendations that were made from the investigations,” a statement signed by General Secretary of the NDC, indicated.

The party is convinced that the credibility of the 2020 general elections will be compromised should the EC fails to find the causes and punished culprits of the malpractices recorded during the December referenda.

By: Kekeli Kuatsenu/awakenewsonline.com