General News of Thursday, 13 December 2012

Source: Deborah Wiafe-Agyei

Transition team will not affect our pursuit of justice - NPP

The first Vice Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Fred Oware has insisted that the party’s decision to legally challenge the results of the 2012 elections will in no way be hampered by the transition process started by the new government.

The NPP has rejected the results of the 2012 presidential and parliamentary elections saying it has evidence to prove the elections were rigged in favour of the NDC by the EC.

According to the party, their pursuit of the legal solution to the situation is also to ensure the protection of the sanctity of the ideals of democracy.

According to Mr. Oware, “we will have a group of people who will be able to manipulate an electoral system and perpetuate themselves in power”.

Speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show, Mr. Oware said he believed the Electoral Commission’s decision to keep ballot boxes over night without counting them left much to be desired.

“The law guides us all and makes room for where there are difficulties to suspend voting and continue the next day but it does not say we should count the ballots before stashing them away and I think common sense should have prevailed at that point,” he said.

“This makes you believe that there is some form of conspiracy or complacency in arriving at some conclusions that had perhaps been planned. We have gathered enough evidence including documentary evidence and we are satisfied because if we do not do anything more it will still be significant to overturn the EC”.

Mr. Oware went further defended the Chairman of the NPP, Jake Obetsebi Lamptey’s earlier comments where he described the incident as a “systematic and pervasive pattern of vote stealing. ”

Mr Oware said: “It is the EC primarily as the referee who is creating the environment for these things to happen and it’s systematic and pervasive because it happened in almost every region. We have the evidence to prove it”.

“There were instances where the biometric machines were not used at all and polling stations were created on the spur of the moment without our knowledge,” he added.

When asked whether the NPP had representatives at each stage of the chain, the first Vice Chair indicated that, “at the onset, they become genuine mistakes because everyone makes mistakes. However, it’s not a mistake when it becomes systematic and pervasive and the EC refuses to take a look at our petition. This creates foundation for us to think it was deliberate. The mistakes may have happened after they [representatives] had signed and gone home”.

“Whether my agent was there or not becomes irrelevant when the referee refuses to acknowledge that there are mistakes. If we didn’t feel that the final outcome was wrong, we won’t subject ourselves to this exercise,” he opined.

“Posterity will look at us and find out what we did when we had the opportunity to bring refinement to our electoral process. We can’t just abandon this because we say we are looking for peace neither should we also say we are going to pursue this... we need to bring refinement into this country,” he added.