A pressure group has described as fraudulent, the ‘evidence’ presented to the country’s Electoral Commission by the New Patriotic Party that sought to push for a new voters’ register for the country.
According to the group, Coalition for the Defence of Equal Citizenship, its investigations has revealed that the Burkina Faso’s electoral register – one of the documents the NPP based its arguments on- has no photos.
“Therefore, it is impossible to use any facial recognition software to cross-reference subjects… Their Togo register argument was also very erroneous,” it pointed out in a statement issued on Monday.
The NPP has in the last months been pushing for a new voters’ register grounding its arguments on claims that foreign nationals, particularly from Togo, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast, have infiltrated the country’s electoral roll.
On August 18, 2015, it submitted the names of more than 76,000 Togolese it said are on Ghana’s voters register after a review of less than 10 per cent of the registers of the two countries using a facial recognition software.
Again, the party in September 2015 submitted samples of 2,096 separate cases of what it claims were double and multiple registration from all the 10 of the country.
The allegations caused the EC to commission a five member panel to look into the issues and submitted a report on it to the Commission for consideration. A forum was consequently held by the panel which gathered all the arguments and evidence.
In its report submitted to the EC on December 21, 2015, the panel concluded that the “arguments for a new register unconvincing and therefore does not recommend the replacement of the current voters’ register.
While the NPP has come out to condemn the decision taken by the EC, the group believes the EC has performed well in the past year and congratulated the EC for “a good job done in the year 2015,”
“We at CODEC were very convinced from the very beginning that the allegations made by the NPP through its surrogates groups and other civil society groups definitely did not warrant the complete overhaul of the electoral register,” it said.
The group added: “From unjustified attacks of the Commission’s performance right down to our current Electoral Register which was biometrically generated, we saw the dark hand of destruction at work”.
By Stephen Kwabena Effah|tv3network.com
Read the full statement below
CODEC CONGRATULATES THE ELECTORAL COMMISSION FOR ITS CONDUCT IN THE YEAR 2015 AND CALLS FOR THE SUPPORT OF NATIONAL INTEREST OVER PAROCHIAL POLITICAL POLEMICS
CODEC will like to take this unique occasion of the celebration of the New Year to congratulate the Electoral Commission for a good job done in the year 2015 and to wish all Ghanaians a Happy and Prosperous 2016.
On the democratic front, the rash and unjustified attempt to undermine the democratic institutions that form the pillars of the 1992 constitution increased its crescendo to a very alarming degree in the year 2015 and that is quite worrying.
This manifested in hasty attempts by some political activists and civil society groups to literally wash away the reputation of our Electoral Commission and its commitment towards organizing free and fair elections.
From unjustified attacks of the Commission’s performance right down to our current Electoral Register which was biometrically generated we saw the dark hand of destruction at work.
An attempt was made to hoodwink the Electoral Commission and swindle a good number of Ghanaians in the court of public opinion but once again just as the electoral petition presented to the Supreme Court in 2013, the arguments were finally deemed as baseless and highly untenable.
In all these the EC had stayed resolute ensuring that facts and proper logical thinking reigned supreme over emotional outbursts and illogical conclusions which could derail our democratic process and lead to needless expenditure on the limited resourced obtained from the taxpayer.
We at CODEC were very convinced from the very beginning that the allegations made by the NPP through its surrogates groups and other civil society groups definitely did not warrant the complete overhaul of the electoral register.
We also believe as many other Ghanaians and right-thinking civil society groups that the mechanisms inherent within the provisions of the Electoral Law and operations of the EC has the cleansing effect to continuously clean our register.
We would also like to posit that the NPP was fraudulent in its attempt at presenting what it calls evidence to the Electoral Commission. Information reaching us indicates that Burkina Faso’s Electoral Register had no photos and therefore it is impossible to use any facial recognition software to cross-reference subjects.
Their Togo register argument was also very erroneous. We would therefore want to ask the EC to publish copies of their petition with its addenda to prove otherwise.
We would however want to advice those who have made it their duty to attack the EC and weaken its resolve to be independent to remember that our national interest must not be made to pander to the parochial interest of one group or another.
With these few words we will like to set the tone in 2016 towards ensuring our National Security is made steadfast in the year 2016. We will also want to call on all other institutions to perform their mandated constitutional roles even as we approach the crucial time of the 2016 General Elections.
There is no need to fear, or panic; Ghana truly being the shining example on the African continent will definitely have a very uneventful political campaigning period and peaceful elections. We just have to do our part as citizens and governing institutions.
May the new year bring in its wake a sense of national pride and commitment towards protecting our democratic institutions and may all Ghanaians put Ghana first before everything else.
Happy New Year.
Godwin Edudzi Kudzo Tameklo
4th January, 2016.
(Director of Operations
(Education Coordinator –