Ghana Elections: EC assures Ghanaians

The Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC), Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, has assured Ghanaians that the results of last Sunday’s elections will be made public soon after they have been received and authenticated at the commission’s headquarters in Accra.

In a statement issued in Accra yesterday, Dr Afari-Gyan said it was premature at this time for anybody to talk about delay in releasing the results or a winner of the election.

“I sincerely hope that politicians, journalists and commentators will make mature and informed statements in relation to the election results. In this regard, I consider it to be unprincipled for any person to regard the same action to be imprudent when it is done by someone else but all right when it is done by himself/herself,” he remarked.

The statement by Dr Afari-Gyan was in apparent reference to claims by the two major political parties, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) that they had both won the elections.

The EC Chairman had indicated previously that the results of the elections would be officially declared within 72 hours of the end of voting. At the time of issuing the statement, it was barely 24 hours after the close of the polls.

In the earlier events, the NDC and the NPP contested the outcome of last Sunday’s elections even before the EC officially declared the results.

Whereas the NDC claimed victory in the elections following results the party said it had received from its agents at the various collation centres, the NPP described those claims as false.

A statement issued by the Communications Director of the NDC Campaign Team, Mr Koku Anyidoho, said from the figures the party had, there was no way the NPP could win the elections.

“We, therefore, will be very surprised if any subsequent announcement will present any different result, and we call on the Electoral Commission to ensure the integrity of the election is

respected”, it noted.
However, a rebuttal statement issued by the Chairman of the NPP, Communication Committee, Dr Arthur Kobina Kennedy, said “the NDC is not winning and we are not trying to rig this election”.

“At this point, with about 10 per cent of votes counted, we can assert that our candidate is in the lead in the presidential elections and is heading for a first round victory, while we are on course to maintain our parliamentary majority, ” it added.

The NDC statement denied accusations by the NPP which it claimed were reckless but pointed out that “as a responsible political party, we will act to ensure that the voice of the people is respected and that the election results accurately reflects the will of the people”.

“The New Patriotic Party will not be able to use spin and sophistry to create an impression of victory where there is a clear defeat,” the statement said, and urged the EC to expedite the declaration of the election results.

It criticised the recount of ballot papers at the Ayawaso Central Constituency, contrary to the provisions of the electoral laws, specifically C.I. 15, saying: “It is most unfortunate and we are surprised that the electoral officers present and the Electoral Commission allowed this to happen.”

In its statement, the NPP asked the NDC and other parties to allow the EC to do its work and refrain from their “disgraceful efforts aimed at discrediting this elections”.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the NPP Campaign Committee, Mr Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, has thanked Ghanaians for their patriotism in standing in queues for long hours in order to vote.

Source: Daily Graphic

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