Prove you're neutral – CODEO tells EC
The Coordinator for the Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO), Mr Albert Kofi Arhin, has advised the Electoral Commission to engage all political parties in its decision-making process following allegations by the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) that the EC is working to hand the 2016 elections to the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Mr Arhin, who once worked at the EC as Director of Operations, also said the EC has a difficult task of convincing some political parties of its neutrality.
Speaking to Class News, he said: “The EC is an independent body, but a referee as well, so, if the NPP thinks that is what they are doing, then, of course, they might have to look back.”
He said if the opposition parties perceive the EC as being biased, then the EC “needs to bring everybody on board”.
“If that is the impression, then they will have to explain to them the rationale behind the decision they have taken and maybe to let them know that they don’t mean anything untoward.
“It is for them to convince every stakeholder that they are not for a particular group and that they are for everybody. I think if the EC undertakes that assignment to let everybody know that they are for everybody, I think it will work in everybody’s favour,” he added.
The NPP perceives the EC to be working in the interest of the government after the EC turned down the party’s request for a new voters’ register.
In a press briefing on Thursday, January 14, the party ordered the EC to stop all internal auditing processes rolled out by the electoral body towards cleaning up the 2012 register of voters ahead of the November elections.