The Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) is asking the Electoral Commission to act on its mandate of demanding audited financial statements of political parties as a way of scrutinizing financiers of activities of the parties. 
This comes in the wake of the increasing cost of political campaigns which invariably fuels serious and organized crimes believed to be perpetrated by party financiers. 
The political think-tank says the Electoral Commission must be interested and serious in finding out the faces financing campaigns of aspiring political leaders to minimize organized crimes in Ghana. 
The non-partisan organization is also proposing that businesses awarded contracts under a party’s governmental regime must disclose their ownership and influence on the ruling party. 
Fundraising Manager at GII, Michael Boadi, spoke to journalists at a workshop aimed at sensitizing youth leaders on Serious and Organized Crime and its threats to the 2024 elections. 
“The electoral commission must take its mandate of receiving audited accounts from the political parties a bit more serious than it is doing now. They must go beyond the presentation of the account but must scrutinize who are the financiers and where the funds are being generated from,” he said.

He continued that: “we have beneficiary ownership disclosure clauses in the new Company Act, so we must interrogate who are the people getting new contracts in any new regime that comes after 2025. We must ask of their contribution to the party when they were campaigning”.

The cost of political campaigns has been on the ascendency since 2016. Studies have shown that a parliamentary aspirant in Ghana must pump a minimum of 600,000 dollars to fund campaigns. 
The reports indicate the cost of political campaigns increased from 300,000 dollars to 693,000 dollars in 2016 and 2020 respectively, representing a 59% increase. 
Mr. Boadu says the country must not be lackadaisical in smoking out perpetrators of organized crime and voter-inducements which taint the integrity of elections. 
“Let us bar it completely so that nobody is doing it. This will be easier to control it. When the sanctions is biting equally on everybody, we will stop it. When we play a lukewarm, pretending to control it then we are not going anywhere,” he said.
He says the Office of the Special Prosecutor must not only arrest such culprits, but prosecute them to deter others. 

“The OSP’s action of beginning to arrest people who are engaged in vote-buying and vote-selling, it’s laudable thing. Let’s not stop at just the arrest. The OSP must go beyond and prosecute a few people. People will begin to sit up,” he said.
Some participants of the zonal workshop were concerned about the negative impacts of organized crime on the country’s electioneering process. 

They inferred that the fraudulent act hinders developmental growth, citing that rightful leaders are not elected to change the fortunes of the country. 
“Mining is the root cause of Money laundering done by many of these political actors and leaders. These leaders sometimes need more foreign denominations to they will find any means to get it. This is when they come into these mining sectors. These organized crime and vote-buying also affects the election of eight leaders for the country,” one the participants said.