The Electoral Commission (EC) is not aware of any pre-thumb-printed ballot papers for the December 7 presidential and parliamentary elections, Charlotte Osei, Chair of the EC, has said.
Her comment follows news that broke Monday December 5 that the opposition New Patriotic Party’s chairman in the Ashanti Region, Bernard Antwi-Boasiako, had led police officers and journalists to a room at Madison Lodge at TUC, Kumasi, where three bags containing ballot papers, all thumb-printed for John Mahama, were found.
The situation led to over 500 supporters of the NPP massing up at the Central Police Command in the regional capital to demand answers.
The police in the Ashanti Region subsequently said those ballot papers were fake.
But commenting on the matter at a press conference in Accra on Tuesday December 6, Mrs Osei said: “More importantly this year, each region will have a different colour for their validation stamp. This is to prevent any possible importation of fake ballot papers into the electoral process. Strange ballots will be easily identified and isolated during the sorting and counting process.
“And again the Electoral Commission has not printed ballot papers in collusion with any political party, and we are not aware of any valid, genuine ballot papers which have been pre-thumb-printed.
“All ballot papers, after printing, were handed over to the security agencies with the party representatives present, all the serial numbers were noted, and so if there is any strange ballot paper floating around which has already been thumb-printed, we would request that it is brought to our attention and we will call the party representatives who were present when it was handed over to bring the serial numbers of the ballot papers that were printed so we can cross-check this and ensure they are authentic or not.”