The Electoral
Commission’s (EC) on Tuesday said internal investigations report has revealed
that videos circulating on social media suggesting multiple voting in the
December 27 referendum for the creation of six new regions are false.

Mr Samuel Tettey, a Deputy Chairperson of the
EC in-charge of Elections, speaking at a press conference, in Accra to
outlining the findings of the Commission’s internal investigation, said after
analysing the videos and conducting the necessary investigations, their
conclusion was that the videos were not real.

Present at the event were Mrs Jean Mensa, EC
Chairperson and Dr Eric Bossman Asare, EC Deputy Chairperson in-charge of
Corporate Services.

Mr Tettey said the videos circulating, which
started circulating on social media immediately after the December 27
referendum presented crucial questions for the Commission’s consideration.

“Our stance was informed by the following
reasons: Since we did not issue staff identity cards for the temporary staff we
engaged for the referendum, all election officials were given election
official’s jackets at the polling station just before the commencement of the
voting and were taken back immediately after the results had been declared at
the polling station,” Mr Tettey stated.

“We insisted that the jackets should be won
throughout the voting period for security and identification reason. All the
coordinators and officers who monitored the voting have confirmed that this
directive was strictly complied with,” he said.

Mr Tettey said “The question then is: How come
that none of the officials sighted in all the videos was wearing the election
official’s jacket? Again, these officials were not recruited online.”

He said the Returning Officers (ROs) and the
technicians in conjunction with the District Electoral Officer (DEOs)
personally recruited and trained all the polling officials; stating that the
ROs handed the election materials to the official personally.

He said they also went around for monitoring
and had personal interactions with these election officials on the voting day.

He said the election officials submitted the
election results and materials back to the ROs after everything was over;
declaring that “with this number of interactions, the ROs could have identified
the faces of the people involved if there were really the Commission’s staff.

“A critical look at one of the videos, in
which somebody was thumb printing ballot papers outside the screen, reveals
that the ballots did not bear the conspicuous Yellow and Brown colours for Yes
and No respectively as appeared on the ballots for the referendum,” Mr Tettey

“In the same video, the logo on the papers on
the next table was the old one without the coat of arms which we did not use
for the referendum,” he said.

He said it was instructive to note that all
the documents they used for the referendum bore the original logo with the
coats of arms which had been reintroduced before the referendum.

He said the video did not indicate the
locations and the time that the incidents took place and since the Commission
had not gotten the capacity to establish when, where and how the videos were
shot, things in the video continue to be a mystery till now.

“That is why we are hoping that the security
agencies to whom the issues have been referred will expedite action on them to
put the matter to rest.

“What we can confidently say for now is that
we suspect the videos were put out there apparently to discredit the referendum
and the integrity of the Commission,” he said.

Mr Tettey said however, in connection with the
second video taken from a location near a grave, the Commission could confirm
that from its investigations that the said polling station (CMB Shed D180102)
exists in the Jasikan District in the newly created Oti Region.

He recounted that the gentleman who took the
video was interrogated by the District Officer but he claimed he was excited to
witness the referendum taking place and as a result decided to take the video
with his phone.

He said in as much as the Commission accepts
that some irregularities might have occurred in the referendum, these were not
recorded across the new six regions; stating that the irregularities were not
widespread and systematic in the affected regions and therefore, not
infractions of the electoral process.

Mr Tettey said in spite of the few challenges
experienced, the referendum was generally peaceful and very successful.

“However, we are still looking forward to the police to continue from where we ended and should there be any trace of criminality established, we will give our full support and corporation to have the culprits brought to book,” he said.

Source: GNA