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NDC shocked

Thu, 4 Aug 2016 Source: dailyguideafrica.com

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has expressed shock about the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP’s) decision to kick against the electronic transmission of the 2016 election results.

According to the NDC, the whole idea of the e-transmission of results – known as Electronic Results Transmission System – (ERTS), was a proposal by the NPP which was exhaustively debated and accepted by the Electoral Reform Committee before approval by IPAC and finally accepted by the Electoral Commission.

NPP’s Concern

The NPP recently expressed grave concern over what it noted to be a deliberate attempt by the EC to keep it in abeyance in decisions regarding the electronic transmission of the December 2016 election results.

Peter Mac Manu, NPP Campaign Manager, said the party was not invited to sit in when the five companies that had been shortlisted to be considered for the contract were invited by the EC to demonstrate its software.

NDC Responds

However, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, NDC General Secretary who addressed the media yesterday, said, “It is surprising that the NPP is kicking against the e-transmission and blaming its introduction on EC without the involvement of political parties.”

He said in a document titled, ‘Towards reforming Ghana’s future elections,’ submitted to the EC under a cover letter with heading ‘New Patriotic Party Reform Proposals’ signed by then National Chairman, the late Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey, and addressed to the Chairman of the EC, the NPP proposed the e-transmission of results.

Mr Asiedu Nketia aka General Mosquito said the NPP in the document said, “The Commission may adopt the use of satellite transmission of results to the National Tallying Centre pending the receipt of pink sheets from the regions. In this regard, the EC should consider procuring handheld scanners to scan and send all pink sheets to Accra before collation and receipt of hard copies.”

He added that in the same document the NPP stated, “The party recommends that decisions at IPAC ought to form part of the body of constitutional instruments which will govern the conduct of elections in this country.”

Asiedu Nketia said the NDC was surprised that the NPP is rejecting the e-transmission of results after it had proposed and agreed on its introduction at IPAC.

“We have observed that the NPP will first participate actively in all the engagements to seek consensus together with all other parties and stakeholders, commit their authorized signatures to the agreements reached and yet come out publicly not only to dissociate themselves from, but actually attack these decisions and putting the blame on other innocent stakeholders,” he said.

He admitted that while the ERTS has no legal backing, an agreement had been between the EC and the political parties at IPAC meeting, to which the NPP was a party, on the rules which would and would not have constitutional backing.

“There’s no law backing the electronic transmission. When you are dealing with elections, there are some aspects that are administrative and others that are covered by subsidiary legislation – CIs and LIs and others that are covered by the constitution. It’s not everything that should be backed by law,” he argued.

Mr Asiedu Nketia said since the establishment of IPAC in 1994 almost all the reforms to the electoral system have been agreed by consensus; steps are taken to enact the enabling legislation which consequently attracts very little controversy.

“It is against this background that the NDC views the positions taken by the main opponents, NPP, with a lot of concern. We wish to tell the NPP that they should let their yes be yes and no be no,” he charged.

Source: dailyguideafrica.com
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