GII condemns ‘vote buying’ by some parliamentary aspirants at NDC primaries


The Ghana Integrity Initiative has condemned the distribution of money and other items by some parliamentary aspirants at the just-ended primaries of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).

In a statement released on Monday, May 15, 2023, the GII said these incidents witnessed at the primaries marred the largely peaceful event.

“Vote buying and financial inducements distort the democratic principles of fair and transparent elections.”

“Such practices compromise the principles of equality, accountability, and good governance. By employing these unethical tactics, candidates prioritize personal gain over the interests of the electorate, thereby eroding public trust and damaging the democratic fabric of our nation,” parts of the statement read.

GII also indicated that these actions are in violation of Section 240 (undue influence at elections), Section 241 and Section 249 (deals with Illegal practice in connection with voting) of the Criminal Offenses Act (1960) (Act 29).

The NDC held its presidential and parliamentary primaries on Saturday.

During the elections, one aspirant in Ejura Sekyeredumase in the Ashanti Region was captured on video openly splashing cash on persons believed to be delegates at the voting grounds.

In another constituency, an aspirant supposedly bought bags of rice to be distributed to delegates after voting.

Following the elections, the Office of the Special Prosecutor has invited the parliamentary aspirant for Ejura Sekyeredumase over a suspected case of corruption.

According to a letter intercepted by JoyNews, Juliana Kinang Wassan is one of the persons of interest for their actions during the opposition party’s presidential and parliamentary primaries on May 13.

In the letter, the OSP said it has commenced an investigation into suspected corruption in respect of her action.

The GII has backed the OSP’s initial action stating that such acts constitute electoral corruption and must be investigated.

“This is an important step towards sanitizing the country’s campaign processes. We pray that the full length of the law is explored to control what has come to be known as the monetization of the country’s elections.”

GII condemns 'vote buying' by some parliamentary aspirants at NDC primaries

GII also called on the Electoral Commission to evoke its powers of disqualification to disqualify candidates and parties that fall foul of Sessions 240, 241, and 249 of the Criminal Offence Act, 1960 (Act 29).

“GII urges all stakeholders, including political parties, candidates, voters, and the general public, to join the campaign to ensure that the 2024 elections come off with the highest standards of political integrity so that winners and losers will accept the outcome graciously.”

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