General News of Wednesday, 31 August 2016
Source: Kwarteng, Francis
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) says they are very comfortable with and in support of all the electoral reforms that have been initiated by the Electoral Commission (EC) after the Election Petition case.
However, the opposition party says a lot of work still needed to be done by electoral management body, especially, during the December 7 general polls.
Director of Elections for the elephant family, Martin Adjei-Mensah Korsah interacting with Accra FM on Tuesday said although the EC has initiated 27 reforms with some already being implemented, the test case will be the day of the elections.
“A number of reforms have been initiated by the EC and accepted by all stakeholders with some being implemented. For example, at the collation center, the EC has mounted giant screens for the announcement of results. So, the results will no more be stated on paper but on the giant walls for all to see. Previously it wasn’t there. During the District Assemblies Elections we were witnesses to some of them as well. For the first time biometric devices were sent to all the 29,000 polling stations for the elections. The pink sheet has been redesigned as well as the ballot paper”.
“But what is actually worrying our reforms is election-day related – whether we have been able to recruit the right caliber of people and given them the right training. Today, the EC wants to recruit accountants, lawyers among other professionals to help in the collation process so that we don’t go and print the pink sheets with the same serial numbers as well as same polling station codes on pink sheets. We also don’t want the Presiding Officer to make mistakes in filing the results of the polls. All these reforms have been done but we can test it on the d-day. As to whether these reforms are going to change from the current situation or improve upon the previous situation is yet to be tested”, he noted.
Mr. Mensah Korsah’s reaction comes at the backdrop of the third anniversary of the Election Petition case which verdict was given on August 29, 2013 by the Supreme Court of the land and the lessons learnt from the exercise.