Ghana’s election management body Electoral Commission (EC) is putting measures in place to enable it declare the December 7, 2020 general election results 24 hours after the polls.
EC’s Director of Electoral Services Dr Serebour Quaicoe announced this in an interview with the media yesterday.
“We have given the register to the political parties about two weeks ago and since you haven’t heard any complaints, it means everything has been addressed. We are planning to declare results 24 hours after the election, that’s our plan,” he indicated.
Dr Quaicoe explained that there would be regional collation centres to collate presidential results at all the 16 regions after the polls.
According to him, the EC headquarters will only collate the results from the 16 regions and declare the winner.
It had always been the practice of EC receiving constituency results from all the 275 constituencies, which are collated before the chairperson of the Commission, who is the presiding officer for the presidential election declare the final results.
However, the EC is now decentralising the collation at the regional level to make the process faster.
A couple of weeks ago, Rev Sam Korankye Ankrah advised the EC to declare the results of the presidential election as soon as possible to ease the tension that characterises that period when there is a delay in calling the results.
In the 2016 elections, for example, the elections were declared two days after the polls had ended.
It sparked some fear and panic among the citizenry, who were unsure of the election outcome due to the numerous news conferences and counter-news conferences by the two main political parties with then governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) claiming to be in “comfortable lead”.
To avoid such tension, the founder and leader of Royalhouse Chapel has urged the EC to declare the results, at least, a day after the polls end.
He also called on losing candidates to concede.
Delivering a sermon in church recently, the Apostle General said, “When the results are released, any man who loses must concede.
“Concede that you’ve lost; and, by the way, when the votes are cast, the three, four, five days that the Electoral Commission makes Ghana sit and wait, those days are troubling because we can’t eat, we can’t go out, we are troubled, we don’t know what will happen because one group is doing a press conference and says: ‘Don’t worry, we are having a comfortable lead’. While they are having that press conference, another one is countering them saying, ‘We are not in the comfortable lead but by the results we have, we have already won.’
“And you see fear in the atmosphere of the whole country, apprehension; people are not going, people are not coming, people who have blood pressure fall and die.
“Please, Electoral Commission, is it possible to, when we finish election, within the following day, declare the results? Are we not in a computer age?” he wondered.
“Declare the results and when the results are announced, the losers must concede as Saul conceded to David”, Rev Ankrah stated.