Whatsup News has received highlights from the crunch meeting that the Electoral Commission held today with the Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC), over the EC’s controversial decision to compile a new register for the 2020 election, and can report that the EC’s Consultant fumbled in an attempt to defend the EC’s position.
The confusion of the IT consultants irked some of the IPAC members and resulted in a near free-for-all, as tempers were calmed, Whatsup News gathered.
The people that the EC had presented as its computer wizards allegedly, were a picture of confusion when they were asked whether the decision to compile a new voters register on grounds that the existing biometric equipment are obsolete, means that in future when the new ones that they wish to acquire also, become obsolete, the EC would have to compile another new register in order to use them.
The question which is said to have been delivered by a member of one of the Civil Society Organizations at the meeting is said to have disarmed the Dr. Yaw Ofori Adjei, the EC’s Consultant. He allegedly fidgeted for a while, before answering “No.”
“If in future, the replacement of new biometric equipment will not necessitate the compilation of a new register, then why is it that this time round, you are insisting that we change the register?” the CSO representative (name withheld) had asked.
To this, Dr. Adjei and the rest of the IT team are said to have just stood there at the meeting, staring away at nothing.
Our source, who pleads anonymity due to the fact that the meeting was a plenary one, reports that the body language of Mrs. Jean Mensah, the EC Chairperson quickly became defeatist.
The meeting had come off at the Coconut Grove hotel in Accra at the behest of the EC’s own Committee of Eminent advisors. It was closed-door one that had a heavy Police presence to ensure that only those invited had access. Journalists who had trooped to the venue ahead of proceedings were sacked by hawkish Police officers who warned that the meeting’s proceedings were not for public consumption.
Participants had been drawn from IPAC, CSOs and the EC, with the Council of Eminent Advisors serving as host.
Per the programme outline covering the meeting, the deliberation was going to last two hours within which the Chairman of the Eminent Advisory Council of the EC, Mr Justice Emile Short; the Chairperson of the EC, Mrs. Jean Mensa; the consultant to the EC on the voters’ register, Dr Yaw Ofori-Adjei were to make presentations.
According to sources, Political party leaders, including Kofi Akpalu, were given the floor to make presentations before Mrs. Jean Mensah took the floor to advocate the EC position. The Chairperson is said to have said nothing new from the claims that she has been making all along.
The claims have been that the existing biometric infrastructure is obsolete and needs to be replaced. She did not address the well-known position by CSOs that what Jean Mensah is calling obsolete has an operational error margin that is among the best in the world.
Meanwhile, ahead of the meeting, founder and leader of the All Peoples Congress (APC) Hassan Ayariga, said Mrs. Jean was insistent on replacing the register as part of an agenda to rig the 2020 election for the ruling NPP.
“when you have full control of the new election management system you can manipulate the results; you can change the figures when the results come in, you can decide to make anybody President, that is the main reason why they are looking for anew register not because our old register is not credible,” Dr. Ayariga said.
A communiqué is to be issued at the end of the meeting.