The Electoral Commission has said that it will replace the six (6) ballot boxes that supposedly fell off a pickup truck, and went missing in the Western Region before Election Day on December 7th.
In a post on its official Facebook page, the EC stated that, “for the six empty ballot boxes that fell off the pickup truck in the Western Region, a report has been made to the police. They will be replaced by the Commission before election day”.
The NPP in the Western Region which raised red flags over the incident; has called on its constituency executives in the region; to go to their respective district EC offices and ensure that all ballot papers are counted.
Public angry over replacement
Meanwhile, over 130 persons who commented on the EC’s post as at the time of our check; expressed their anger over the Commission’s reaction to the issue.
According to them, the EC must commit itself to assisting the police in looking for the missing ballot boxes rather than replacing them.
Some argued that the danger associated with the six getting into wrong hands can have disturbing consequences on the December 7 polls.
Speaking to Citi News in Takoradi, the Western Regional Secretary of the NPP, Charles Cromwell Bissue, explained that “on 16th of November 2016, when the ballot boxes were being transported to the various constituencies in the region, in between Tarkwa, six of the boxes went missing. It was reported to the Tarkwa Police; but later had to be reported to the Kwesimintsim Police Command yesterday [Friday].
We got wind of it and we were told the police have started investigations it.”
He added that, “as a political party we are not happy. As a result, we have called for a regional executive committee meeting to look into the matter.
The reason is that; as a political party we are trying to restore democratic integrity into our electoral processes. However, there are so much suspicions transpiring now, in view of the fact that people do not trust the EC now. We were helping the EC to restore integrity but it appears the EC does not want it.”
Poor security for election materials?
It appears there’s very little security for the election materials considering the importance of such a national exercise. When Citi News visited the Western Regional office of the Electoral Commission, the election materials were being arranged in the open with no security.
The wired-fence wall to the regional office has collapsed for several months, making the premises easily accessible.