By Patrick Biddah
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has accused the Electoral Commission (EC) of teaming up with the New Patriotic Party(NPP) to illegally register new voters in the ongoing limited voter registration exercise.
According to the NDC, its agents sent out to monitor the registration, have brought impeccable evidence which shows the illegality being perpetrated by both the EC and the NPP.
Addressing a press conference at the NDC headquarters yesterday to show video and picture evidence to buttress the claims of illegality, General Secretary of the party, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, revealed that not only is the EC conniving with the NPP to register those unqualified, but also challenges arising out of the limited voter registration vindicates the NDC warnings it gave to the EC before the exercise begun.
In the case of the EC and the NPP connivance, he alleged that five officials of the EC and elements, have been caught registering 100 unqualified voters.
Providing details at the press conference, the General Secretary, indicated that 100 under aged registrants were caught in the office of the Birim Central municipal assembly.
An NDC monitoring team, according to the General Secretary, who were tasked to go round the limited voter registration exercise centers reported that new registration Centres were created and equipped with BVR equipment which saw to the registration in the presence of NPP officials but without the notice to NDC at all.
With video evidence, the General Secretary, also showed an NPP TESCON executive officer, who was arrested on the sixth day of registration with already completed registration materials in his Toyota Camry with registration number GR 4015-10 and was taken to the Adabraka Police station.
“In another instance, in Obuasi where the BVR equipment was found to have been preloaded with over one hundred names before the commencement of the registration, this was discovered at the close of registration of day one ,by NDC agents”, he added.
The General Secretary, who spoke about other irregularities, also touched on claims of intimidation and harassment of potential registrants in the strongholds of the NDC by NPP vigilantes operating under the guise of state security agencies with the objective of disrupting the exercise leading to suppression of voter numbers in these areas.
He cited an incident at Kasoa in the Awutu Senya East municipality of the Central region, where a Municipal Chief Executive ordered the beating of a registration officer.
“At Akwerley ,a suburb of Kasoa NPP thugs unleash an unprovoked violence on Mr Freeman Adjah Tetteh, the registration officer for turning down an order by the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) to have special numbers issued to people who were in the queue after close of the day’s registration”, he stressed.
In another instance of the harassment and intimidation, Mr Asiedu Nketia, alleged that the monitoring team found out how school buses of government second cycle schools, have been ordered by government officials to convey students, including minors and under aged ones to registration centers and in some cases the equipment moved.
“A typical case in point is in the Offinso North District in the Ashanti region and the Toase Senior High school case mentioned earlier.
In the Afadjato South District for example, the DCE Hon Wisdom Senanu Saneadza, has confirmed through telephone conversation with our monitoring team on his own phone number 0243275790, that he has directed the Heads of three second cycle schools not to grant any student an exeat within this registration period “,he added.
The NDC’s observation of the registration, he said is a calculated and well rehearsed orchestration Electoral Commission to create confusion which will allow the NPP to pursue its political parochial interest rather than a national one.
He has therefore warned the Electoral Commission of the implications of its actions and called on Ghanaians to speak against it.
He said parents who allow their unqualified children to register only creates bio data problems for them because as soon as the edited bio data of the children enters the system of the EC it conflicts with the correct and accurate bio data of an individual later in life which lead to criminal prosecutions.