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21.12.2004 Politics

EC overturns Pru Parliamentary Election results

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Sunyani, Dec. 21 GNA - Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC) on Tuesday overturned the Parliamentary Election results and declared Mr Abdul Rahman Masoud, Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), as the Member of Parliament (MP)-Elect of the Pru Constituency in the Brong Ahafo Region.
Dr Afari-Gyan made the declaration at a meeting with the Media, Regional Officers of EC; Returning Officers involved and Representatives of the NDC and People's National Convention (PNC) in Sunyani after re-collation of the Pru Constituency election results.
Representatives of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the Independent Candidate were absent, even though they were served with invitation letters to attend the meeting.
There was heavy Police presence at the Sunyani EC Office, where the meeting was held and only those invited were allowed to enter the premises.
Dr Afari-Gyan said the EC had the authority under the Constitution to go on with the collation, even in the absence of some representatives and to come out with acceptable results.
He said those aggrieved after the declaration of the results could then send the EC to court for it to produce the basis of declaring the results, adding that the EC was not afraid of being dragged to court since the court would always help to arrive at the truth.
He said the re-collation become necessary after carefully studying the petition of the NDC on the results of the area. He said the EC found out that there were so many irregularities and, therefore, decided on a date for the re- collation.
The results of the 23 out of the 29 polling centres at Abease Area in the Pru Constituency after the re-collation by the EC were: PNC, 205; NPP, 2,865; NDC, 4,822 and Independent 87.
Dr Afari Gyan said the result announced earlier by Mr George Boboase, the Returning Officer as PNC, 332; NPP 11,756; NDC 1,149 and Independent, 124 could not be possible since the total number of voters registered in the area was 12,540 and the result was not the true reflection of what actually happened there.
After adding the results of the 23 out of the 29 polling stations at Abease Area to the 78 results of polling stations in the Yeji and Prang Areas, which were collated before the mob attack, the final results of the Parliamentary results were as follows: PNC, 555; NPP, 12,029; NDC, 22,080 and Independent 305.
Dr Afari Gyan said, even if the total number of 3,258 voters on the register of the six outstanding polling stations, whose results were missing because of the mob attack, were added to the NPP figure, it would still be far less than that of the NDC.
He said the EC would collate the Presidential Results of the Pru Constituency later.
The EC Chairman condemned the attack on the Returning Officers and the burning of the electoral boxes, saying if the electoral boxers were burnt it did not mean that the results could not be declared since the result sheets could be collected from the Polling Agents for collation.
He described the action of the mob as criminal and advised Returning Officers to suspend results in such situations and not allow themselves to be coerced to announced results or release two sets of figures.
Mr Boboase told the press that after declaring the results of the 78 polling stations in the Prang and Yeji Areas out of the 104 in Constituency, he had information that a mob was coming to attack him so he fled, leaving Mr Samuel Yeboah and Alhaji M. Ganba, his two Deputies, at the collation centre.
He said the mob attacked his Deputies at the centre and burnt all the 104 electoral boxes including the results sheets they were holding. Mr Boboase said he then sent a message to Mr Yeboah to go round and find the Presiding Officers of the Abease Area for their result sheets so that they could do the collation.
He said he went to the area the following day to meet Mr Yeboah at the Police Station with the sheets collected from the Presiding Officers and so declared the results of the Abease area at the Police Station in the presence of the Police and the Military.
When asked by the Media how he came about the huge and unbelievable figures, Mr Boboase said the tension in the town did not allow him to crosscheck the results he collected from the Presiding Officers before handing them over to the Returning Officer.

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