Special Voting results show NPP is in the lead – social media users claim
There have been no counting and declaration of results from the Special Voters by the Electoral Commission. It will be done after the polls on December 7, 2020.
The Constitutional Instrument 94 allows for a Special Voting day for voters who, as a result of election duties, will not be able to be present at the polling station where the voter is registered on the day of the election.
The Special Voters list this year includes security agencies, the media and officers of the Electoral Commission who will be on assignment on election day.
This exercise happened on Monday, December 1, 2020, and few hours after voting, some Facebook users and Twitter users posted what is purported to be the results from the Special Voting in favour of their preferred political party.
Are Special Votes counted and results declared before election day?
The 2020 Constitutional Instrument 127 specifies that the ballot boxes are sealed after the special voting with the seals of the Electoral Commission and opened at the time of the counting of the votes from the day of the election.
Regulation 23 of 2020 CI 127 which details the process of the special voters’ list also indicates who should be in charge of the ballot papers after the close of the special voting and the day for it to be counted.
(11) The returning officer shall, at the end of the special voting,
(a) ensure that the ballot boxes are kept in safe custody after the poll has closed;
(b) ensure that the ballot boxes are sealed with the seals of the Commission and any candidates who wish to add their seal; and
(c) arrange for the ballot boxes to be opened at the time of the counting of the votes cast on the polling day and the ballot papers shall be counted in the same manner as those contained in the ballot boxes used on the polling day.
Dubawa also enquired from the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) about the counting of ballot boxes from Special Voting exercise, and it was explained that the ballot boxes from the Special Voting have been locked and kept away until after elections on December 7, which will be counted together with the ballot boxes from election day.
The Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs at NCCE, Mrs Joyce Afutu stated that,
“No vote has been counted yet, everything will be counted and results declared after election day on Monday.’’
Who declares the election results?
Only the Chairman of the Electoral Commission, according to the 2020 C.I. 127, is responsible for declaring the election results after the assembling and collating of results from the regions and duly following the necessary protocols, after election day on 7 December,
Till then, all other declaration of results are to be disregarded.
The claim indicating that NPP records 63% from the special voters is false. The C.I 127 does not permit the counting of ballot boxes from Special Voters till after the day of the election on 7 December.
Additionally, only the Chairman of the EC is mandated to declare the results after all ballot boxes have been counted after election day.