In recent months, political parties including the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the Convention People’s Party (CPP) and civil society groups such as the Let My Vote Count Alliance have made the case for urgent electoral reform in the lead up to the November 2016 elections.

Read more...

Barrister Mike Igini was, until recently, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, for Cross River and Edo States respectively. In this interview, he bares his mind on the use of the card  reader  for the 2015 general elections. Excerpts:

Read more...

We invited the media today for this news conference because we find it strange and potentialy dangerous that the most reasonable solution that was tabled by the VCRAC Crabbe panel for giving Ghana a credible register for credible elections in 2016 appears to have been totally ignored by the Electoral Commission. We, therefore, want to draw attention to this and ask you, journalists, the Fourth Estate of the Realm, to demand urgent answers from the Electoral Commission on the fate of the wise proposal from the EC’s own panel of experts for the introduction of validation for the voters’ register. Full Publication

Read more...

We study election fraud in a competitive but not fully consolidated multiparty democracy. Results from a randomized field experiment are used to investigate the effectiveness of newly-introduced biometric identification machines in reducing election fraud in Ghana’s December 2012 national elections. We uncover a non-random pattern to the frequent breakdowns of the equipment. In polling stations with a randomly assigned domestic election observer, machines were about 50 percent less likely to experience breakdown as they were in polling stations without observers. We also find that electoral competition in the parliamentary race is strongly associated with greater machine breakdown. Machine malfunction in turn facilitated election fraud, including overvoting, registry rigging, and ballot stuffing, especially where election observers were not present. Our results substantiate that partisan competition may promote election fraud in a newly-established competitive democracy. They also show that domestic election observers improve election integrity through direct observation and also thanks to their second-order effects on election administration. Full Publication

Read more...

Other Stories

DUFFUOR’S DISINCENTIVISING DISINFLATION VICTORIES
On Wednesday, June 14, the Ghana Statistical Service announced a single digit inflation of 9.52 for the month of June, which Finance Minister Kwabena Duffuor, according to media reports, told Ghanaians that it is the first time the country has achieved a single digit inflation rate since 1999. The GSS, in the same week, brought out some very worrying figures which confirmed that Ghanaians have gotten poorer. Per capita income was $654.80 in 2007. It moved up impressively to $713.33 in 2008. By the end of 2009, per capita income had fallen to $659.21. Which means that every Ghanaian was on an average $54.12 worse off last year than they were in 2008. Yet, Government spin doctors, conducted by the Finance Minister, want us to focus mainly on the discordant vuvuzelating chorus of a single digit inflation.
Oil and the 2012 Budget Statement – Reflections on the Ghanaian Economy
Budgets have become annual rituals and have defined the directions of the economy. It therefore does not evoke the level of interests it did in the past. However, the last two Budget Statements of the Government of Ghana have been significant for two reasons. First, the introduction of oil revenues to the budget has raised expectations of Ghanaians for improvement in their living conditions and whether oil could provide that boost is a function of its management which the Budget has responsibility for. Click here for full article
DI Reschedules Symposium on Election Petition
The Danquah Institute has been compelled to reschedule its symposium on the Election Petition due to the refusal of the British Council to host the event because of what it describes as the “politically suggestive” nature of the event. It is recalled that the Danquah Institute had originally scheduled the event to take place on Monday, 16th September, a date the Institute had set because of the assurances it received from the British Council about the availability of its auditorium on the said date.
In the last fifteen years a problem has presented itself to the courts in the form of a limitation on a power which, prior to this time, most courts had come to consider as axiomatic. This was the power to punish for contempt. In its broadest sense, this power had existed in the courts from the time of their inception, founded in a public policy which regarded it as an attribute both inherent and necessary for the protection of the judicial function.' While never entirely above regulation, 2 restriction upon any aspect of its exercise was re- garded as a matter of immediate concern to the courts in which it vested. Thus, when Bridges v. California 3 decided in 1941 that the power of state courts to impose criminal punishment for contempt on individuals who, by public comment, attempt to exert influence over judicial proceedings was subject to the freedoms of speech and press guaranteed by the First Amendment, the decision was looked upon by many writers with varying degrees of alarm. 4 Nor was it unnatural that the flood of commentaries which the case evoked should deal primarily with the long range effects of the decision, rather than to attempt more than a surface analysis of the holding itself. Viewing the law as it developed out of the Bridges case and the ones which followed, it is felt that there is a need for clarification of this nebulous field, and to submit an interpretation which, it is hoped, represents the law as it stands today. Full Document
Highlights of 2012 Budget Statement
The present number of unanticipated events and further deterioration of the global economic environment could have substantial spillovers to the Ghanaian economy; Preliminary results from WAMI’s half year surveillance report indicates that the overall economic performance in the WAMZ remained strong with real GDP expected to expand by 8.0 per cent in 2011, compared to 7.7 per cent in 2010. Click here for highlights
Egypt votes in post-Mubarak polls
Egyptians are voting in the opening stage of the first elections since former President Hosni Mubarak was toppled in February. As dawn broke, people were already queuing to cast their ballots outside polling stations in the capital, Cairo. But protesters who want the vote to be postponed still occupy Tahrir Square. The head of the country's military council, which took over after Mr Mubarak was unseated, has said the country is "at a crossroads".
Africa's Chance to Leapfrog the West
You've heard about the African Renaissance, right? The Aid Bosses, once the unquestioned successors in Africa to the joint heirloom of Mother Teresa and Lord Clive of Chennai, are finding it harder and harder to get face time with the political grandees in our wheeling and dealing capitals. The Chinese are fawning all over our oil and copper, forcing once-aloof Westerners to write treatises about why China's engagement with the continent isn't all marshmallow candy.
Ghana loses $480m in oil revenue
An analysis of the petroleum receipts and distribution report, for the period ending 30th September 2011, published by the Dr Kwabena Dufuor on the 21st of November 2011 reveals that Ghana lost a total amount of $479,317,303.30 under the Royalty Tax System it has adopted.
If we educate our people and the oil run out we would’ve saved our nation – Nana Addo
The Presidential Candidate of the opposition New Patriotic Party, Nana Akufo-Addo has mounted arguably the most robust defence yet of his free senior high school promise. Answering a question on how to use the country’s oil resources for the benefit of the people, Nana Akufo-Addo said his commitment to the free SHS policy was not about winning the December elections but about preparing the country’s next generation.
The term “corruption” is used as a shorthand reference for a large range of illicit or illegal activities. Although there is no universal or comprehensive definition as to what constitutes corrupt behavior, the most prominent definitions share a common emphasis upon the abuse of public power or position for personal advantage. The Oxford Unabridged Dictionary defines corruption as “perversion or destruction of integrity in the discharge of public duties by bribery or favor.” The Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary defines it as “inducement to wrong by improper or unlawful means (as bribery).” The succinct definition utilized by the World Bank is “the abuse of public office for private gain.” This definition is similar to that employed by Transparency International (TI), the leading NGO in the global anticorruption effort: “Corruption involves behavior on the part of officials in the public sector, whether politicians or civil servants, in which they improperly and unlawfully enrich themselves, or those close to them, by the misuse of the public power entrusted to them.” more >>>