EC accountants ordered not to disburse referendum cash
The Electoral Commission has directed its regional accountants to ‘hold on’ with the issuance of funds to the respective branches for the December referendum.
An internal memo from the deputy chairperson of the commission in charge of operation to staff sighted by Starr News did not give a reason for the directive.
The memo also directed that a scheduled training for officers ahead of the referendum should be put on hold.
“I write to request you to kindly hold on to funds meant for Referendum balance Issuers. Regional Directors are required to ensure that this directive is strictly complied with. Please standby for further directives in due cause.
“Regional Directors are kindly requested to inform District Electoral Officers to hold on with the organization of the impending Grassroots Training Workshops scheduled to start from today,29th November 2019 until they have received funds for that purpose,’ the two memos addressed to staff read.
The development comes in the wake of fears that the referendum will be put on hold following mounting opposition to the intention to allow political parties to sponsor candidates in local level polls.
First to make the call for the cancellation of the exercise was the minister for regional reorganisation Dan Botwe.
Meanwhile, the Executive Director for the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG) Dr Emmanuel Akwetey who has campaigned vigorously for a ‘yes vote’ has joined calls for the suspension of the December 17 referendum.
According to him, the controversies surrounding the impending exercise must be addressed before it is held.
Speaking on Shaping the Nation Show on Starr FM Monday, the IDEG boss said those calling for the cancellation of the exercise should rethink their position.
“… It could be rescheduling with time specified, but also clearly the machinery for educating people objectively, not the bias thing like we reduce it to in elections. For constitutional amendment it is not a party election, you need consensus and there is a lot of work to be done to get this consensus.
“Not everyone is saying cancel it, and those who are saying cancel it, they must rethink,” he said.