The National Democratic Congress has blown the lid off a clever attempt to rig the upcoming Asawase bye-election against the NDC.
A press statement signed by the Ashanti Regional Secretary of the NDC, Mr. Sly Akakpovie, said the NDC has detected a huge fraud in the electoral roll to be used for the Asawase bye-elections.
According to the statement, whereas the total number of registered voters for the Asawase constituency stood at 80,315 at the 2004 elections, the number of registered voters has inexplicably shot up to 88,350 voters, an increase of almost ten percent (10%).
The statement said, “the total number of voters for the Asawase constituency in the Ashanti Region stood at 80,315 at the December 2005 elections. The number of total votes cast was 68,224. The number of valid votes cast was 67,485 with turnout of 84.9%.”
“Very strangely, the number of Registered voters for Asawase has increased from 80,315as published by the Electoral Commission in various bulletins to 88,350 voters on the electoral roll for the Asawase by-elections,” the statement continued.
The NDC believes that this inexplicable bloat in the figure of registered voters “is a recipe for rigging”, and has therefore called on the Electoral Commission to “rectify the anomaly and take steps to prevent fraud in the pending bye-elections.”
The statement assures the electorate that “our eyes are wide open and we will expose the rigging machinery that is being put in place.”
The discovery of the inflation of the number of eligible voters on the electoral roll is the latest of several desperate efforts on the NPP to wrest the Asawase seat from the NDC at all cost.
Just recently, as part of their campaign of intimidation and harassment, NPP thugs attacked the Ashanti Regional Organiser of the NDC while he was on campaign rounds at Asawase, brutalised him and vandalised his vehicle to the extent that the windscreen of the vehicle got smashed to smithereens.
After this shameful act, one Ayisi Poku, an NPP big shot in the Ashanti region, was said to have gone to the NDC regional office and pled with them not to make the matter public and that he would recompense the brutalised NDC official for his pain and damaged vehicle.
Prior to that a member of an NPP delegation that paid an unannounced visit to the widow of the late NDC MP of the constituency, ostensibly to express their condolences, ended up pummelling the poor woman.
Perhaps, the most telling evidence of the desperation of the NPP was when the Statesman, the mouthpiece of the NPP, sought to whip up Moslem sentiments against the NDC. Asawase is a predominantly Moslem community.