PNC considers court action over 'rigged' Talensi by-election

The General Secretary of the People’s National Convention, PNC, Bernard Monah, has told TV3, the leadership of the party would be meeting lawyers to take a decision on what they term as ‘rigging’ in the hotly-contested Talensi by-election in the Upper East Region.

The contest was to fill a vacuum created by the former MP, Robert Monsore, resigned to be enskinned as the chief of the Tolon Traditional area.

At the end of voting, the NDC’s B.T. Baba, polled 10, 366 votes representing 42.31% of the total votes while the NPP’s Wuni Thomas Buanab polled 6,845 votes representing 27.94%. PNC’s Wombeo Namal Teng followed closely with 6,836 representing 27.90% of the total votes. The other five candidates together polled less than  300 votes.

PNC’s Candidate

But the PNC’s Candidate, Dr. Wombeo Namal Teng, who came third with just nine votes difference against the NPP’s candidate, says events that took place at some polling centers in Talensi, clearly showed that the party had been short-changed by the Electoral Commission.

He told Accra-based Joy FM, “I tell you the results could be tampered with even at the polling station without the knowledge of other party members and I must be frank with you [that] some of the EC members who were there…there were biases among them”, he said.

He says his allegations are not empty, insisting he has evidence to back them.

“These are not useless allegations. I am not somebody who would like put blame [of not winning the elections] on others. I want to believe that even if these results are counted ballot [box] by ballot box, the results would be different”, he said.

Bernard Monah

The party’s General Secretary Bernard Monah, repeated similar claims by their candidate in an interview with TV3’s Midday Live on Wednesday.

Mr. Monah said he could not understand why the EC refused a recount of the votes as requested by the PNC before the final results, insisting that was bias because in his view, the EC would have done that for the so-called bigger parties.
A clearly infuriated Bernard Monah said the Talensi incident clearly shows that the EC had in previous years tampered with the votes of the PNC and other smaller political parties for the benefit of the so-called bigger parties.

He said the EC appeared to have connived with the eventual winners of the polls to deny PNC’s its appropriate votes.

Some of his claims were based on the fact that the PNC in particular strangely turned out to have a lot of the spoilt ballots explaining that in one instance, they had to draw the attention of the EC official that some ballot papers that were being rejected, were actually intact.

Mr. Monah says questions about whether or not the rejected ballots, totaling a little over 800 could overturn the results for their candidate is irrelevant.

He accused the two major parties of buying votes using state resources, intimidating voters and perpetuating violence through armed youth groups.

Meanwhile the Deputy General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress, Kofi Adams, has rubbished the allegations saying the NDC’s margin of more than 4,000 votes between the two cannot support such claims.

The Electoral Commission is yet to respond to the PNC’s claim.

Asked whether the party would consider a court action, Mr. Monah said they will be meeting their lawyers to consider that option.

By:Ebenezer Afanyi Dadzie/3news.com/Ghana

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