Independent Audit of Pink Sheet: Minority Parties and CSOs back NDC’s call
By Zaratu Yussif
Some minority political parties and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) that made of the membership of Inter-Party Resistance Against New Voters Register (IPRAN) have added their voice to the call of the National Democratic Congress’s (NDC) for an independent audit of the pink sheets used to declare the winner of the 2020 general election by the Electoral Commissioner (EC).
At a press conference held today in Accra, the group said; “we are by this press conference demanding immediately an independent audit of all the presidential results in all 38,622 polling station across the country and all those results collated by an independent audit firm agreed on by both the political parties and the electoral commission to bring finality to the process and the seeming unrest and protests in the country.”
The presser which was addressed by Mr David Author, General Secretary of Egles Party noted that, “It is obvious and it is becoming clearer that this election was rigged in favor of the New Patriotic Party candidate, NANA ADDO DANQUAH AKUFFO ADDO. Is it not sad that the electoral commission of Ghana will take for granted our peace and security in this country and erode all the gains we have made in our democracy in this shameful manner?”
He lamented that, it’s sad to note that for the first time in our history the EC has come out to admit there were errors in the declaration of the presidential elections results they hurriedly declared. The flip-flopping of the EC and the change of figures on the Electoral Commissions website is a clear indication that the 2020 presidential and parliamentary elections is completely flawed.
“This among many other reasons is why IPRAN wants the EC to engage the political parties involved to resolve all issues regarding the presidential results together with an independent audit firm, so that the EC can declare fair, credible and transparent presidential results acceptable by all the parties involved”, he demanded.
Read full statement below:
PRESS CONFERENCE ADDRESSED BY THE INTER PARTY RESISTANCE AGAINST NEW VOTERS REGISTER (IPRAN) ON THE POST 2020 ELECTION CRISIS: IPRAN DEMANDS AN INDEPENDENT AUDIT OF THE 2020 PRESIDENTIAL RESULTS
Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen of the press. We are pleased to welcome you all to this important press conference of the IPRAN. As you are all aware our democracy has come under attack by the Jean Mensah-led electoral commission in the last few days. Following the 2020 elections and the unfortunate circumstances and manner in which the presidential results were declared, we can confidently say, the Electoral commission was compromised and the results declared is not a true reflection of the will of the Ghanaian people. Ironically enough, after hurriedly declaring the flawed presidential results on 9th December, 2020, the electoral commission has gone ahead to change the presidential results more than five times. This is quiet worrying and unfortunate to say the least, in a fragile democracy like ours. And we expect all well-meaning Ghanaians and respectable people in society to rise up and speak against this injustice, fraud and irresponsible act of the Electoral Commission perpetuated on the Ghanaian people.
Ladies and gentlemen we are by this press conference demanding immediately an independent audit of all the presidential results in all 38,622 polling station across the country and all those results collated by an independent audit firm agreed on by both the political parties and the electoral commission to bring finality to the process and the seeming unrest and protests in the country. It is obvious and it is becoming clearer that this election was rigged in favor of the New Patriotic Party candidate, NANA ADDO DANQUAH AKUFFO ADDO. Is it not sad that the electoral commission of Ghana will take for granted our peace and security in this country and erode all the gains we have made in our democracy in this shameful manner?
It’s sad to note that for the first time in our history the EC has come out to admit there were errors in the declaration of the presidential elections results they hurriedly declared. The flip-flopping of the EC and the change of figures on the Electoral Commissions website is a clear indication that the 2020 presidential and parliamentary elections is completely flawed. This among many other reasons is why IPRAN wants the EC to engage the political parties involved to resolve all issues regarding the presidential results together with an independent audit firm, so that the EC can declare fair, credible and transparent presidential results acceptable by all the parties involved.
What we witnessed in this year’s election are clear signs of an ailing democracy and an apparent erosion of all the gains we have made in our democratic practice since 1992 and the EC must take immediate steps to redeem its image by allowing for an independent audit into the process to vindicate them or otherwise on the results they announced, especially if they are convinced they did a good job to clear the huge doubt in the minds of every Ghanaian, especially those in the NDC party. We believe strongly that when this is done, both parties i.e. the NDC and NPP will accept whatever the outcome is and Ghana once again will be the ultimate winner.
Ladies and gentlemen, let’s note that if this flawed and contentious declaration is allowed to pass, we will set a very bad precedence where any future failed, power-drunk and power-tasty government can cook or conjure figures and push it down the throat of the electoral commission to declare however right or wrong the figures may be, like the Jean Mensah electoral commission is doing now and thus stealing the mandate of the people as we have witnessed in this year’s elections. This is certainly not the way to go, let’s all work in the interest of the state to help preserve the peace and stability we enjoy as Ghanaians. Ghana has been touted as the beacon of Democracy and Hope in Africa, how then did we get here? The electoral commission must come out and do the needful to boost confidence of the people in the electoral process.
Elections are the quintessential arbiter of political contestation within democratic countries. This is a path Ghana has chosen and followed and we must jealously work to protect our democratic credentials. Ladies and gentlemen, the use of the military and the police in Techiman south to kill innocent citizens who had just gone to protect their votes in this year’s elections is a dent on our democracy. We strongly condemn this act by those cowards and unprofessional military and police vigilantes. As we speak, five people have been killed and about nine more people severely injured and in critical condition just because they wanted to witness ballot counting at a collation center. In all of these, the president of the republic, in whose name and benefit these violent attacks were perpetuated on innocent people has failed to condemn these acts and not bothered to send words of consolation to the bereaved families.
Ladies and gentlemen, no life, and I repeat no life should be lost because of an election. IPRAN therefore condemn in no uncertain terms the indiscriminate shooting of innocent citizens in Techiman South, Odododidoo, Savelugu and Ablekuma Central which has cause the lives of eight (8) innocent citizens, the last of which is Mr Ibrahim Abass was an NDC polling agent at the CDR polling station in the Ablekuma Central Constituency. He gave up the ghost in the early hours of this morning and will be buried later in the day. Very sad moment for the family and relatives. This sporadic shooting and killings was a grand calculated scheme employed by the Akuffo Addo government to scare away supporters to give way for the ruling government to perpetrate their rigging plans in order to overturn the verdict of the people in favor the ruling NPP through the Electoral Commission. We therefore call on the President through his IGP to bring those vigilantes in military uniforms to book. We express our sincere condolences to the families of the bereaved as we wish the injured a speedy recovery. Never again should any life be lost in future elections.
Ladies and gentlemen, let us serve a note of caution to the government and its agents that no gun will be used to install a president in this country, we are not going back to the dark days, where the mighty and strong have their way. Ghanaians have spoken through their thumbs and the decision is clear, the sitting president together with the electoral commission cannot overturn the verdict of the people. They should know that power belongs to the people and if the people rise no military power or force can overpower them. The deliberate attempt by the EC to overturn parliamentary seats won by the NDC for the NPP to deny the NDC the majority in parliament is most unfortunate.
The electoral commission which is supposed to be neutral in this electoral process has allowed itself to be used by the Nana Addo-led government to perpetuate this treasonable crime on the people of Ghana. But we want to send a strong signal to the electoral commission and the NPP government that the will of the people cannot be overturned by any state institution, not the EC, not the ruling government or the judiciary. In sefwi Wiaso, Techiman South, Tarkwa Nsuaem, Esikado Ketan, Sene West and many other places, the will of the people must be respected.
Electoral crises all over our continent stems from the fact that major parties in the election felt cheated. In the interest of the state, the peace and stability of the country, there is the need for an independent audit of the electoral results and re-collation to put the matter to rest. If the NPP are confident they won the election, then it’s in their own interest that they subject themselves to this process so that the people of Ghana will be clear in their minds as to who actually and truly won the elections to bring an end to the protests and demonstrations we are seeing all over the country.
Ladies and gentlemen, the most embarrassing moment of the entire 2020 electoral process was the cooked up arithmetic errors in the presidential results as declared by Madam Jean Mensah. On 9thDecember, the EC chair amidst protest from the NDC still went ahead to declare the presidential results. In the said declaration, Nana Addo of the NPP polled 6,730,413 votes representing 51.295 percent of total valid votes cast according to Madam Jean Mensah, using the total valid vote of 13, 434,574. Let’s even assume her figures are correct. If you calculate 6,730, 413 over 13, 434,574 x 100 it gives you 50.098 percent. (6,730,413/13,434,574x100=50.098%). Ladies and gentlemen, how then did Jean Mensah arrive at the 51.295 percent in her declaration on 9th December, 2020? It’s clear the electoral commission cooked up those figures to be able to declare its favorite candidate Nana Addo Danquah Akuffo Addo as president.
Our friends from the media, take note that the electoral commission declared the results without votes from Techiman south because there was a dispute. The total registered votes from Techiman south is 128, 018. If you add the votes from Techiman south to the total valid votes cast the denominator or base will change from 13,434,574 to 13,562,592. If you calculate Nana Addo’s vote 6,730,413 over 13,562,592multiplied by 100, it gives you 49.62 percent and that’s a straight run off. How then did the EC chair write off the Techiman South votes in her declaration that it will have no impact? Granted that we even go by these figures declared by the EC which we believe were padded for President Akuffo Addo and that of President Mahama deliberately reduced, it clearly shows you that president Akuffo Addo did not in any way win the election as the Electoral commission wants us to believe. Fellow Ghanaians you wanted evidence, this is a clear evidence that NANA Addo Danquah Akuffo Addo, did not win the 2020 presidential elections as declared by the Electoral Commission.
Ladies and gentlemen, we saw how in some polling stations president Mahama’s votes were reduced and President Akuffo Addo’s votes increased deliberately in most of the constituency collation centers. In Kintampo North, President Akuffo Addo polled, 17,998 but the EC and the media reported, 27,998 an increase of over 10,000 votes for President Akuffo Addo. In Builsa North on the face of the pink Sheet, president Mahama polled 16,654 and Nana Addo, 6,931, but the EC exchanged the figures and gave John Mahama’s 16, 654 to Nana Addo and Nana Addo’s 6931 to John Mahama. In the Yilo Krobo constituency, John Mahama’s votes was reduced by over 3000 votes, just to mention a few. This is a clear indication that the entire electoral process was flawed. There are too many anomalies and all these ought to be corrected before the declaration, but the EC won’t listen. This is the reason why we need to have an independent audit of all the pink sheet, so we can deal with all this anomalies and declare the true reflection of what the Ghanaian people voted for. The independent audit will help deal with all these issues.
Ladies and Gentlemen, all the events leading up to this election clearly demonstrated that the electoral commission was bent on rigging the election for the NPP and Nana Addo. Fortunately, the rigging machinery ably set in motion by the NPP and supported by Jean Mensah and the Electoral Commission have been caught pants down due the vigilance of our party agents and the quest of the Ghanaian voter for change that satisfies their needs aspirations.
When we put out this information, the Electoral Commission quickly came out to say they declared wrong results. On 10thDecember therefore the EC put out new figures. In that press release, NANA Addo’s votes jumped from 6,730,413to 6,730,587 that is a vote gain of 174. This was three clear days after voting, where did the vote increase come from? Ladies and gentlemen the Electoral commission is joking with the peace and stability of the country and this must not be countenanced.
Ladies and gentlemen, on the same 10thDecember, President Mahama’s votes dropped from 6,214,889 to 6,213,182, a reduction of over 1,707. How did present Mahama’s votes drop again three days after voting? Ladies and gentlemen this is not a legal issue, this is an arithmetic issue the reason we need to allow an independent audit into the entire electoral and collation process. We cannot accept this level of dishonest incompetence displayed by the EC Chair. Everything the electoral commission has done clearly shows their interest to rig the election for the NPP and president Akuffo Addo.
We cannot sit down and allow this to happen. Ladies and gentlemen of the press, the admission of the EC that they declared the wrong results in itself is an admission of the fact that the election was flawed and gives enough room for people to doubt the credibility of the results hence the rejection of the results by the NDC and its leadership. We find this basic arithmetic errors rather unfortunate and beats ones imagination how the electoral commission will make such a mistake in a crucial election as this, if not for electoral fraud. We believe strongly that the errors were deliberately committed to give President Akuffo Addo an undue advantage to cross the fifty plus one vote threshold. Quite unfortunately, the Electoral Commission has made Ghana a subject of mockery in the international community. The beacon of hope and democracy is today returning to its dark days, where the strong and mighty in society determines who becomes the president through computational errors. This is unacceptable, to say the least and must be resisted vehemently by all progressives.
Free and fair elections are the foundation of every healthy democracy, ensuring that government’s power and authority is derived from the will of the people which is non-negotiable. Madam Jean Mensah and her Electoral Commission will not be allowed to impose a president on us. If they think Nana Addo won the election free, fair and squarely, then in the interest of transparency let’s have an independent audit of the pink sheets as collated by the Electoral Commission to establish the true winner of the presidential polls. This should be welcoming news for the New Patriotic Party as well as this will give them the opportunity to prove to the whole world they indeed won the election and to clear doubts in the minds of all Ghanaians.
Ladies and gentlemen, our friends from the media, admittedly, the media in this year’s elections must admit they let all of us down. Your role as gate keepers and the fourth estate of the realm did not come to play in this year’s election as you have always done over the years. About 95 percent of media houses during this elections projected a 51.3 win for President Akuffo Addo. Ladies and gentlemen we have proven to you per our calculations that no candidate in this year’s election crossed 51 percent, how did all of you arrive then at the 51.3 percent. The media who claimed their figures tallied with that of the electoral commission have all been proven wrong with the constant massaging of figures by the electoral commission on daily basis on their website. As we speak the current Electoral Commission’s figures have changed from the initial figures which were in the media and which everyone had. Why is the media not asking questions? The admission of the EC that they declared wrong figures clearly goes to suggest the media also got their data and projections wrong.
Most of the media houses have been silent on the abuse of military and state power to overturn the verdict of the people in most constituencies. The media is not showing any interest in the indiscriminate shooting at Techiman South where five people have reportedly died. Most media houses have been silent on all of these. You have been the pillar on which this democracy has been built and therefore your silence on some critical national issues will not help the course of the state. You need to do your job without fear or favor.
We are calling on the media to show particular interest and interrogate the issues and put pressure on the Electoral Commission also, to come out and do the right thing by declaring result that reflects the 2020 presidential polls. The Electoral Commission must go beyond just the press release to correct the computational errors, but must engage both political parties to resolve all the errors as identified and all parties given a fair hearing. Elections disputes have brought chaos and civil uprising in many parts of our continent the reason we all need to work to ensure a transparent and fair electoral process so all parties can accept the outcome, irrespective.
We have read in the media, where some prominent people in our society including the national peace council, calling on the flag bearer of the NDC, HE John Dramani Mahama to ensure peace in the country. How does John Mahama ensure peace? You have left the president who is the chairman of the national Security Council and commander in chief of the Ghana armed Forces and blaming the tension in the Country on a responsible citizen who have been cheated in an election. National peace council was quiet when innocent citizens were shot in Techiman South, Ododiodoo, Savelegu and Ablekuma Central where eight people died by those unprofessional police and military men. They never found their voice during those killing but can conveniently call on president Mahama to ensure peace. This hypocrisy and dishonesty by some section of our society must stop. When it’s the other political party they go mute. Like Albert Einstein once said “the world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything”. We are calling on the national House of Chiefs, the Ghana Journalist Association, the State Security, Ghana Bar Association, Labor groups to all speak to ensure the electoral commission do the right thing. There must be an independent audit of the election results, to clear doubt in the minds of all Ghanaian.
Ladies and gentlemen, the tension in the country should be blamed right at the door step of the electoral commission. They have shown crass dishonesty and incompetence in the discharge of their duties. Before the declaration of the Results the NDC raised a lot of concerns, what a responsible commission should have done was to engage them to rectify the anomalies if indeed there were any with all the parties. You don’t send them to deliver a message to their flag bearer and quickly go and declare presidential results when they had left the national collation center, after assuring them their concerns will be addressed before the declaration. Why is the peace council not calling out the Election to order? Posterity will judge us all.
We want the peace council to know, “true peace is not merely the absence of tension: it’s the presence of justice” as Martin Luther King puts it. In the interest of the peace of the country we call on the electoral commission to ensure every political party is heard and an independent audit of all the pink sheets is conducted by an independent audit firm and this is what we want all well-meaning Ghanaians including the national peace council to add their voices to. This will help settle the matter on who actually won the election and justice will be well served and peace will prevail.
Ladies and gentlemen the independent audit at this point is a must if the Electoral Commission is interested in giving us a free, fair and transparent electoral results. We believe an independent audit will allay any lingering doubt and reservation about the credibility of the 2020 polls. The Electoral Commission must work hard to redeem its image and regain the public confidence in the electoral process.
God bless our homeland Ghana and make our nation great and strong.
Long live our democracy
Long live our peace and stability