The IMANI Center for Policy and Education is a think tank based in Accra, Ghana.
As a member of the Atlas Economic Research Foundation, the think tank applies free-market solutions to intrinsic domestic social problems.
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It was founded in 2004 by Franklin Cudjo and their service is to promote peace and prosperity.
1. So where does this leave the country? First and foremost, the country should reject the triumphalism of the EC, and deny it the approbation it is so desperately seeking. Throwing $150 million at a non-existent problem and ending up at the same place you started from is no achievement.
3. In a desperate bid to prove to critics that it could compress the registration into 36 days instead of the more than 40 days warranted, it recklessly refused to enforce the social distancing and continuous sanitisation of scanners it had promised (see this video: https://youtu.be/fChfLAi7r6g); mobilised the old BVRs it had cynically claimed were obsolete, then promptly and shamelessly denied using any HP equipment when we had clear video evidence that they did (see here: https://youtu.be/5XIz4_e5MQ0); and disgracefully rigged the guarantor system by condoning the use of pre-filled guarantee forms, whilst blatantly turning a blind eye to collusion among electoral officers and party agents (see here: https://imaniafrica.org/2020/08/07/electoral-commission-of-ghana-ec-registration-recordings/)
4. This is a totally discredited Electoral Commission that needs to embark on serious soul-searching.
The rest of the country should not feel secure about the electoral process until the following has been done:
A. A detailed independent asset audit of the Electoral Commission to account for the 60 million dollars of equipment procured between 2016 and 2019 that it claims have suddenly gone obsolete.
B. Deep and complete reconciliation with the Opposition Parties and CSOs whose calls for accountability it has shunned so far. Failure to patch up and open up to scrutiny by all stakeholders will only deepen the rancour, including the ethnocentric tensions, that marred the integrity of the electoral process in many places.
C. A serious national dialogue about strategies to fix the identification and register cleaning issues that remain wholly unresolved due to continued neglect despite the expenditure of tens of millions of dollars of this country’s hard earned resources over the last decade on the electoral system.
D. Tackle the “Procurement Raj” that has taken hold of the EC and is hell bent on milking the country at all cost through scheme after scheme.
For the sake of our democracy, we hope this country shall take these matters seriously.
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