General News of Thursday, 27 July 2017
Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Mrs. Charlotte Osei has cleared the air about some reported missing monies the commission generated from accreditation fees paid by journalists and funds for the replacement of Voter’s ID cards.
The Electoral Commission, prior to the 2016 polls required that all media houses who sought coverage of the elections pay an amount of GHC 10 for accreditation cards to be provided them.
The commission also received a total of GHC 2,590,080.47 for the processing of replacement voter ID cards before elections.
These monies were reported missing after the elections and details were not provided as to how they had been used.
Mrs. Charlotte Osei however, appearing before Parliament Wednesday, told the house that the monies were intact and had been transferred into the commission’s GCB bank account, explaining that failure to document the details in the 2017 financial report was an oversight which she has to consult the Financial Director about.
According to her, the total amount of GHC 42,710 generated from the accreditation fees and the over GHC 2.5 million collected for replacing Voter’s ID Cards could not have been spent without the approval of the Financial Director.
She explained to Majority Leader, Osei Kyei Mensa Bonsu who queried her on when she found out about the monies that, she discovered the cash only after she requested for the Commission’s bank statement following an invitation from Parliament.
“When I got the letter from parliament inviting me to come and speak to how much we’ve collected for lost or replaced ID cards, then we requested the bank statement and what I found in the bank statement is what I have come to report to the House”.
She was however quick to add “I’m not the entire Commission, there are other people who work on these things, I’m speaking for myself as Chair”, a statement that set the house in tumult for a period.
Realising the commotion her statement might have sparked, Mrs. Osei quickly defended her response. In her defense, she answered the question because of how it was posed.
“The question was, when did I discover, and I am saying I as a person, when I got the letter from Parliament, I requested for the bank statement and then what I found is what I have presented. There are other people who work within the departments on this so it is not a discovery matter”, she said.
Mrs. Chalotte Osei was invited before Parliament after Member of Parliament for Subin, Eugene Antwi, filed an urgent question before the House when he figured some inconsistencies in the financial report, which suggested the EC, did not raise funds internally in its operations in 2016.