At long last the dust surrounding the controversial ‘Pink Sheet’ signing scandal that rocked Savelugu in the Northern Region is settling, and the truth is beginning to collapse the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) claim against the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Electoral Commission (EC).
The Northern Regional EC Director, Sylvester Kanyi, has reportedly confessed to his superiors during interrogation that he gave the directive to all district EC officers in the region to endorse the pink sheets; a directive which fed into the NPP claim that the 2012 presidential election was rigged in favour of President John Dramani Mahama by EC.
Mr. Kanyi, who initially denied any knowledge and involvement when the news broke, made the stunning revelation at the EC’s head office in Accra where he together with his deputy, Mr. Godfred Okley, were summoned to answer the nagging questions over the infamous pink sheets brawl in the Savelugu District of the Northern Region.
In an interview with The Herald, the Northern Regional EC boss admitted he was being investigated by his superiors in Accra. Ms. Salamatu Osman who was nearly killed at Savelugu in the Northern Region by some NPP thugs while carrying out Mr. Kanyi’s unlawful instruction has also revealed her ordeal to this paper in a telephone chat.
Meanwhile, preliminary investigations revealed that Mr. Kanyi together with his bosom friend Dr. Clifford Braimah, the NPP’s Northern Regional Secretary are behind the plot.
This, according to The Herald’s information, was a calculated ploy cleverly designed to give credence to the NPP’s petition pending at the Supreme Court, which resumes tomorrow.
The plot started after NPP National Chairman, Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey announced after the declaration of the presidential results that there had been massive massaging of figures across the country, and mentioned particularly the Savelugu constituency as where 21,000 was declared for President Mahama but 31,000 was transmitted to the EC headquarters.
However, the 10,000 votes he claimed was criminally added to President Mahama’s votes was found to be untrue, but a mere fabrication of facts by Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey.
The Herald gathered that the Northern EC boss after hatching the evil scheme with the NPP executives decided to travel out of town. Mr. Kanyi’s sudden departure became necessary after realizing that the District Electoral Officers, who had protested his orders to sign the sheets, have rather brought presiding officers to the regional office to endorse the pink sheets.
Incidentally for Savelugu District, the District’s Electoral Officer was then on study leave, therefore, a temporary secretary, Ms. Salamatu Osman, the purported service personnel was asked to represent the District’s Electoral Officer for the district.
Ms Salamatu was innocently signing the pink sheets, when irate NPP supporters stormed her house, attacked and embarrassingly dragged her to the police station to support Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey’s false claims.
Additional information available to The Herald, revealed that Mr. Kanyi’s close relationship with NPP’ Dr. Braimah, which is widely known, undermined the authority of the district electoral officers in the region.
Mr. Kanyi, it was interestingly revealed, gave some district officers quotas for recruitment as temporary staff. It is said that the EC boss even gave some 200 names of persons believed to be from his friend, Dr. Braimah.
What is more interesting, is the fact that these people were not trained because they were brought in just two days to the poll, this resulted in the delays in the start of poll in Tamale on polling day December 7, 2012.
Meanwhile, Mr. Kanyi confirmed being summoned by the EC head but declined to give any detail in connection with the pink sheet, when The Herald contacted him.
He told this reporter the matter was still under investigation. This paper also learnt Mr. Kanyi has been issued with a query pending further action.
The Pink Sheet victim, Ms. Salamatu disclosed how she was physically abused by the disgruntled NPP thugs who were set loose on her by their superiors. They had stormed her house claiming their Presiding Officers wanted to sign the Pink Sheets, but later demanded she accompanied them to the Savelugu Police Station.
In a solemn voice, a tormented Ms. Salamatu told The Herald in exclusive interview that the irate supporters stormed and ransacked her entire living room in search of their supposed pink sheets, which had been given to her to by one regional officer to take home and properly signed, well arranged and returned to the regional office at Tamale about thirty minutes drive from Savelugu.
What is more shocking, she recalled was that cameramen were put out on sight around her house to take shots of her for them. She told The Herald that a lot of the things published in the media about her were false and purposely designed to achieve a certain calculated effect.
Ms. Salamatu, who said she was a deputy Returning Officer to the District Elector Officer, bemoaned how her age, was also inflated from 23 to 29 years just to misrepresent her in a political agenda. She disclosed she has since left Savelugu for her safety.
Revealing her nightmare, Ms. Salamatu said she one day received a directive from her boss, one Mr. Benjamin Akanda Akumanuey whom she was assisting after her national service had elapsed to invite all Presiding Officers to sign the pink sheets because he had received an order from the Regional head to do so.