General News of Tuesday, 16 April 2013
Source: Karim Hamza
Persons who were engaged by the Electoral Commission (EC) to supervise the 2012 general election are up in arms against the EC for non-payment of their allowances.
Per the agreement, the temporary staffs were to receive their allowances immediately after supervising the presidential and parliamentary polls.
In a statement, a group calling itself Coalition for the Development of Ghanaians (CODGHA), charged officials of the EC to, without delay, fulfill its part of the agreement.
The statement signed by its Executive Director, William Kwame Agyei, described the Commission’s excuse that it was still expecting funds from government to pay the allowances as palpable false and unacceptable.
On the contrary, the group claims that the Commission has receive substantial amount of the budget it submitted to government prior to the election, stressing that “government is only left with 25,000,000 to pay the EC”.
Government through the ministry of finance has so far release 91. Per cent of the total election budget, the statement said.
Below is the full statement of the group
ELECTORAL COMMISSION MUST PAY WORKERS!!!
Over 120,000 temporarily staffs were engaged by the Electoral Commission (EC) in the 2012 December polls. Whilst these patriotic citizens have stick to their part of the deal by supervising the 2012 December 7th and 8th election, the EC has seemingly sought to break their part of the agreement.
The Electoral Commission promised to pay these staffs immediately after supervising the said presidential and parliamentary election in question. However, 5 months down the line these temporarily staffs have not been paid!
On the contrary EC has sought to blame Government for their failure to make funds available to settle these workers. Our checks however shows that, Dr. Kwadwo Afari Gyan, the Chairman for the Electoral Commission acknowledged receipts of all funds meant for the electoral process at a meeting organized by Editors Forum, Ghana (EFG) in Accra on the 15th of February, 2012.
Meanwhile, we were told that, out of the total electoral related budget presented to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, GH¢ 262,256,525 was paid to the commission from the Consolidated Fund to enable it to conduct and supervise the 2012 presidential and parliamentary elections. So by a simple arithmetic the government should not owe the electoral commission more than 25,000,000 Ghana cedis. For the purpose of clarity and avoidance of doubt we quote Mr. Abdul Hakim Ahmed, the Media Liaison officer of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in an interview with Citi Fm.
According to him, “the disbursement represents 91.5 per cent of the total election related budget amounting to GH¢286,288,025 submitted by the Electoral Commission to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to fund biometric registration, acquisition of verification equipment, exhibition of voters register and the conduct of the Presidential and Parliamentary elections”.
From the above, 25 million Ghana cedis should not stall the payment of over 120,000 patriotic citizens who were engaged by the Electoral Commission in the 2012 parliamentary and presidential election. There seem to be more questions than answers:
1.So between the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, and Dr. Kwadwo Afari Gyan who is telling the truth in relation to the disbursement of funds for last years’ election?
2.What happened to the promise by the public relations officer of EC to pay the casual workers some weeks passed? Does Government really owe the Electoral Commission?
3.If yes, when does Government anticipates paying these funds?
The Electoral Commission must stop playing with the mindset of the workers and find money to pay them least they stand to jeopardize our electoral process! The Minister for Finance and Economic Planning must also come clear on the amount of arrears it owes the commission and when they intend to pay if any.
God bless Mother Ghana!!!
Williams Kwame Agyei (Executive Director)