EC On The Dagger Following Failure To Investigate 2016 Elections Hack
The Electoral Commission (EC) is being pressured by the opposition political parties and civil society following its failure to investigate claims of over voting and hacking during the 2016 general elections.
Former Chairperson of the Commission, Charlotte Osei had attributed the delay in declaring the 2016 presidential results to its system being tampered with.
However, close to two years after the elections were held, the Commission is yet to reveal how the system came to being hacked, those behind it and steps it is taking to mitigate similar future occurrence.
This has got many worried as they fear the 2016 situation will be repeated.
Speaking at the 14th Kronti ne Akwamu lecture in Accra Thursday, a former boss of the Centre of Democratic Development (CDD) Prof Emmanuel Gyimah-Boadi said there are questions of integrity in the minds of the public because none of the issues have been probed.
“I also note that out electoral outcomes and thereof the confidence of Ghanaians in democracy is tarnished by perceived integrity gaps in the EC
It is telling to some of us that some 20 months after the 2016 elections, the EC has yet to offer any validation of its claims of over voting in Ashanti region not has it produced confirmation that its computer servers were compromised and yet these were claims used to justify the delay in announcing the official results of the presidential polls,” he said.
Prof Gyimah Boadi said the development smacks of a culture of self-service rather than public service.
He is not alone. General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Johnson Asiedu Nketia says the EC is not showing seriousness in dealing with the lingering post-election issues.
But was quick to add that the EC could not have dealt with these issues when it was being attacked by petitions and its referral to the Chief Justice for investigations and her subsequent removal from office.
“There was no opportunity for them to even meet as a Commission not to talk of inviting stakeholders to the Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) to enable us to review the elections,” he said.
Chairman of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) Brew Hammond wants the EC to wake up to its responsibilities and tackle these pertinent issues.
He says the party takes cognizance of the challenges the previous EC administration went through but asked the current one to “speed up and work towards addressing these issues.”
Senior Research Fellow at the CDD Kojo Asante it took a lot of effort to calm nerves when the EC delayed the results in 2016 and that should not be allowed to happen again.
He wants immediate steps to be taken to address these issues because almost two years is too long a time for the EC to be silent on the issues.
“There is a real need to review what happened, understand how these systems were interrupted so that we could actually deal with it.”