It has emerged that in spite of the fact that the government provided GH¢198 million (198 billion old cedis) through budgetary allocations to the Electoral Commission (EC), for the biometric registration of voters and electronic verification for the December, 2012 elections, the Commission is reported to be owing over GH¢120 million (120 billion old cedis) in respect of the registration and the elections. According to finance ministry officials, the EC has not provided evidence on the over expenditure given the fact that the budget of the EC even included allocations for run off of the Presidential elections between the first two contestants, if no outright winner emerged. The EC is in a debt crisis following its inability to settle debts owed to suppliers of biometric equipment and election material as well as printers and EC officials, regarding the registration exercise and the December, 2012 general elections.
Apart from the regular staff who have not been paid for months since December, 2012, the EC is known to be indebted to the suppliers of the biometric and verification equipment to the tune of over GH¢ 86 million. (860 billion old cedis).
The reason provided for the huge expenditure by the EC is that additional equipment had to be procured for a nationwide registration exercise and for verification on election day.
The EC is also claiming that it had to intensify its voter education exercise “to create awareness due to protracted court cases and high number of registrants”.
Full Article: Electoral Commission in Debt | VibeGhana.com.