STATEMENT BY THE GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE NDC ON THE SPECIAL VOTING OF 23rd DECEMBER 2008 AND OTHER ELECTORAL MATTERS
The Leadership of the NDC has met in connection with the highly publicized incidents of irregularity and illegality in the Special Ballot that took place on 23rd December 2008. The nature of the irregularities profoundly compromises the integrity of the electoral process. This has been communicated in writing to the Electoral Commission.
Further to that the NDC is compelled to take appropriate measures to protect Ghana's electoral system and protect the interests of the electorate and our Presidential Candidate on Sunday 28th December 2008. As a first step the party has notified the Electoral Commissioner that the party reserves the right to reject results from those polling stations where there was blatant abuse of the electoral process. Furthermore the NDC serves notice that should similar irregularities occur at any polling station in Ghana on Sunday 28thDecember 2008 the NDC will not hesitate to reject the results.
The NDC has made its commitments to free and fair elections through its adherence to the rules and regulations and decisions of the Electoral Commission and IPAC. The party is determined to play its role to ensure free and fair elections and to resist any attempts by the ruling NPP to subvert the will of the people.
The Electoral Commission of Ghana has successfully organized elections since 1992, and has acquired an international reputation for the four previous successful polls they have conducted. The 2008 Presidential and Parliamentary Elections are the fifth to be conducted under the 1992 Constitution. Our electoral procedures are tried and tested and there is no excuse for the irregularities that presently threaten to mar the election this year.
It is the expectation of the NDC that the Electoral Commission will protect its hard won reputation and not succumb to any pressures from the ruling party. In this connection we urge the Electoral Commission to open its eyes and watch the activities of some of its officers who may compromise its standing in the eyes of Ghanaians and the rest of the world.
The integrity of the Ghana Police Service has also been called into question as a result of the apparent complicity of some officers who looked on whilst irregularities and illegalities occurred. Indeed the NDC has reason to suspect the identity of some people who paraded around in police uniforms at polling stations on that day. In line with the IGP's promise that all security personnel assigned to duties at polling stations will wear name tags, the NDC has directed all polling agents of the party to establish the bona fides of all members of the security services whom they suspect to be impersonating officers of the Ghana Police Service. The NDC is making arrangements to support all its polling agents with cameramen to gather documentary evidence to assist in the identification of questionable security personnel and to document illegal activities. We also urge members and sympathizers of the party and the public at large who own camera phones to record all illegal incidents and activities at polling station to supplement the work of the NDC cameramen.
On December 7th the NDC won seven out of ten regions in the Parliamentary and Presidential Elections. The NDC now has a majority of seats in Parliament. It is worth noting that the NPP lost over twenty seats in Parliament. The NDC now has the widest representation in Parliament covering all regions of Ghana. It is therefore the duty of the NDC to legitimately speak for the majority of Ghanaians. As the party with the broadest national support the NDC seeks the Presidency of Prof. John Atta Mills in the interests of political stability and good governance.
The NDC would like to assure the Ghanaian electorate of its determination to protect their right to elect a President of their choice as guaranteed by law. We are aware of the activities of the ruling party in recruiting macho men and an assortment of disruptive elements with a view to snatching ballot boxes and otherwise disturbing the normal conduct of the elections. We are taking steps to protect our polling agents and supporters from intimidation, and assure our supporters that the party will stand with them in ensuring that the right things are done by all parties. We are compelled to take these measures because the President has been curiously silent about all the developments and appears to have abdicated his executive responsibility to maintain a presidential hand and voice regarding these developments that pose a threat to the peace of the Nation.
It is worth noting here that a party that is willing to reverse its policies just to hold onto power cannot be trusted, and will definitely reverse itself again once it does retain power.
The Leadership of the NDC will act with every determination to ensure that the run-off of the 2008 Presidential Election is conducted according to the arrangements agreed by all the political parties and in accordance with the laws of the land with the professional assistance of the security services.
Our strength lies in our ability to uphold the law and the firm belief that a majority of Ghanaians want change. It is the duty of every Ghanaian including all members of the NDC who are registered voters to uphold our democracy through the ballot box on 28th December 2008. It is by casting your ballot that all Ghanaians can participate in healing the wounds and uniting our divided country. VOTE FOR ATTA MILLS. VOTE FOR CHANGE.VOTE FOR A UNITED GHANA.
Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, General Secretary – National Democratic Congress
Thursday, December 25, 2008