General News of Thursday, 27 July 2017
It is emerging that the Electoral Commission (EC) does not have an internal auditor to oversee financial transactions of the commission.
The substantive Internal Auditor was hounded out of office by the EC Chairperson, Charlotte Osei, according to the Deputy EC Director in-charge of Operations, Alhaji Amadu Sulley.
The EC boss and her two deputies – Amadu Sulley and Georgina Opoku-Amankwa, in-charge of Corporate Service – have been trading accusations and counter accusations since a petition was sent to the presidency by unnamed staff of the commission for impeachment processes to be initiated against Mrs. Charlotte Osei.
According to the petitioners, the EC Chairperson allegedly abused her office and engaged in corruption. They asserted that she was incompetent and not fit to lead the commission.
Mrs. Charlotte Osei has responded to the allegations and ended up accusing her two deputies of corruption and sabotage.
She said for instance, that Amadu Sulley collected about GH¢6 million from political parties without recourse to the commission and added that apart from the money, the Operations Director also carried out illegal vote transfers in the run-up to the crucial 2016 general election.
“The Deputy Chairperson, Operations, collected funds above GH¢6m (Six million Ghana Cedis) in cash from some political parties for the organization of party primaries without recourse to the structures of the commission, and without the involvement of the finance department of the commission,” she averred.
However, Amadu Sulley has hit back in a statement, insisting that he did nothing wrong and that it was Mrs. Charlotte Osei who is on a mission to destroy them.
“The Internal Auditor is still alive, even though he resigned out of frustration by the Chair,” Mr Amadu Sulley said, adding, “As at now, the commission is yet to have an Internal Auditor. This is very unfortunate.”
“I will (sic) like to state that, it is not true that the Deputy Chairman, (Ops), took GH¢6 million for primaries of political parties,” he stated.
He said Mrs. Charlotte Osei is inept and lacks knowledge of the electoral system, saying, “Everyone in the commission knew about the primaries except the Chair herself.”
He said that party primaries “are not legally binding on the commission but we supervise them since the parties have it in their respective constitutions to protect integrity of the process.”
According to him, the law only “entreats the commission to supervise the election of the executives of all registered political parties at national, regional and constituency levels as stipulated in Section 17 (2) of Act 574.
He said that on the 2016 primaries, three parties namely, New Patriotic Party (NPP), National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the People’s National Convention (PNC) presented a budget each and were discussed in his office.
“Monies brought by the parties did not come to me but sent to the Accounts Section through Director of Elections of the commission. I did not receive a pesewa; they were all sent to the Accounts Section,” he claimed.
Amadu Sulley further said that “all monies for work of the operatives were sent to them through the Regional Directorate. Monies on consumables like indelible ink, endorsing ink, stamp pads, etc. which belong to the commission, were paid to the commission.”
He said Charlotte Osei at a point ordered the Internal Auditor to investigate him over the payments and the auditor later told him he did not have anything against him after the investigation.
“I don’t understand the motive of the Chair to come out now to make this unfortunate allegation against me and the Deputy Chair, Finance/Administration.