CENAB-USA was abhorred after the group sighted the 33 page report of the electoral commission that was released to parties who were part of the forum that interrogated the concerns of the opposition parties and pressure groups about the 2012 voters register which credibility has fiercely been challenged.
In the report, the EC appear very arrogant and snobbish; a trait that is very classical of the NDC. It was surprising how the EC downplayed some of the pressing concerns with some flimsy and questionable excuses and responses that could only be associated with a tyrannical ruler. Charlotte Osei is now wearing arrogance like a sash decorating the uniform of a military dictator.
It is now apparently clear that the EC is doing the bidding of John Mahama and the NDC; a posture which is a clear affront to our democracy and a potential for political disaster. The arrogantly worded response from the EC echoes the posture and voices of people like Asiedu Nketia, Kofi Adams, John Mahama and their likes on the matter of the New Voter Register (NVR). We bet this response is not EC’s document. It is NDC’s document signed by Charlotte Osei basically as a member of the NDC not the Chairperson of EC.
To corroborate our point, CENAB-USA has chanced upon a transcript of a conversation purported to have occurred between John Mahama and the NDC executives in Koforidua on October, 2015. In the said conversation, Mahama is captured to have mentioned to his executives that “I did not appoint Charlotte Osei because of her beauty but to work for us to retain the seat come 2016!” The conduct of the EC clearly goes to affirm what John Mahama stated.
It is just incomprehensible for the EC to have stated that it cannot invalidate the registrations by voters who presented NHIA cards as proof of citizenship, unless all such persons have also been heard. As it was clearly stated by the Supreme Court in the Abu Ramadan case that the use of the NHIS cards were insufficient as proof of citizenship, CENAB-USA would want to question Charlotte Osei on when she and the EC will be calling these persons whose voting status are in contention to be heard and the right thing immediately done to remedy the injustices meant to disrupt the peace Ghanaians are enjoying?
Again, it was utterly ridiculous for the EC to have tried to justify its recalcitrant nature by attempting to posit that the bloated voters’ register of Ghana is as a result of the voting age and the socio-economic strength – among other things – of Ghana as compared to other African countries like Kenya and South Africa. CENAB-USA will want to point out to the EC that the adult suffrage age for all these countries are the same (18), and that even on socio-economic pedestals, Ghana cannot measure up with Kenya and South Africa. It is therefore shameful on the part of the EC to attempt to justify the excess numbers in our register with these factors. Moreover, in its response, the EC admitted that there is “No automatic linkages of voter registration to the births and deaths registry in Ghana, hence a high number of deceased persons are still on the register.” It is for some of these challenges that CENAB-USA with other pressure groups have been consistent in our demand for a NVR. We believe that a new voter register will help the country to eliminate all the deceased from our register while putting in stringent efforts to prevent it’s occurrence in the future. If the EC thinks differently, then CENAB-USA would like to know what measures are the EC putting in place between now and November to eliminate the thousands of deceased Ghanaians from the register before the elections? CENAB-USA wants to know.
We must state that we find it troubling that the EC flatly rubbished the demand for expunging Togolese nationals from our register only because it could not secure the Togolese voters register. It is quite troubling to understand how and why the EC which is supposed to ensure the sanctity of the Ghanaian voters roll is rather defending an Ecowas register? How could our EC be more interested in the rights and eligibility of Togolese nationals over Ghanaian citizens? If the EC is supporting these illegalities, based on alleged naturalization of these ECOWAS Nationals, where are evidence of their naturalization documents in Ghana? In fact, CENAB-USA is asking the EC how it determined the naturalization status of these 76,000 Togolese doubling as citizens of Ghana and the evidence they have to support their claim. CENAB-USA would want to state in no uncertain terms that Ghana cannot go to 2016 elections with those thousands of Togolese in our register. That should not be allowed to happen; not again!
Another interesting thing is that, with all the funds available to the EC, we find it repugnant for the EC to partly allude to the over-bloating of the register on wrong entries due to software bugs. If the database of our voters register could be hard hit by software bugs in the face of the funds available to the EC, how sure are we that Ghana’s voter register would not easily be manipulated by STL and their likes again in favor of the NDC? How safe is the current voters register from intrusion, Charlotte Osei?
CENAB-USA is calling on the EC to be more independent in its dealings and handling of sensitive matters like the demand for a NVR. This will help to repose the confidence of the opposition parties and civil societies in the institution while creating a level playing field for all parties that will be involved in the 2016 elections. CENAB-USA would want to remind the EC and its boss, Charlotte Osei that their actions and inactions is critical to the peace and stability of our dear country before and after the election. It is better for Charlotte Osei and her office to listen and act now than plant Ghana into total chaos in the very near future.
For the love of our country, Charlotte Osei should not allow herself to be rendered impotent of her job by John Mahama and the NDC like a timorous paper tigress!
Amponsah Stonash CENAB – USA Communications Team