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Afari-Gyan Cornered; Admits Double Registration, Over Voting - Double Registration

Double Registration

Photo ReportingMr. Addison was also able to force Dr. Afari-Gyan to concede that the voters register which in his examination-in-chief claimed did not have instances of double registration indeed contained the anomaly.

However, in both his evidence-in-chief and cross-examination earlier, Dr. Afari-Gyan had vehemently denied that there could be any instance of double registration occurring in the 2012 biometric register but counsel was able to prove to him that the foreign registration was replete with duplications.

About 50 double registration was counted.

Counsel: Dr. Afari-Gyan did you personally check this list, have you checked this list? (Asking the witness about a list of 51 duplicated Ghanaian voters registered abroad)

Witness: Yes I have.

Counsel: So can you tell the court your finding after going through this list.

Witness: My lords, I have two observations to make: The first two persons on the list are not one and the same person. They are Abdulai Inusah Jamil and Abdulai Inusah Jamila. They are twins, male and female, they are dependants of a staff of the Ghana mission in New York, so they are separate people. Apart from that, the rest, the analyses confirm them to be duplicates. That is the first observation I want to make. The second observation is that in every instance of a duplicated name, the person has been placed in the same polling station. Under our system, this would mean that the person cannot vote two times.

Counsel: …Dr. Afari-Gyan these registrations are in the final register?

Witness: Yes they are.

Counsel: And if you look at the list that you have, these names are placed far apart in the register.

Witness: My lord, in the list, they may be far apart, but in each instance, the duplicated name is in the same polling station.

Counsel: Now, the voter IDs are different

Witness: My lords, yes.

Counsel: So each of those voter IDs could be used to vote?

Witness: Under our system, at the same polling station, my lord, this cannot be so because even though the voter ID cards may be different, the biometric information would be the same.

Counsel: They could vote without going through biometric verification.

Witness: My lord, they prescribed mode of voting is to go through biometric verification.

Counsel: When you gave us an instance where a local chief can vote without verification, in the instance where any of these are known in the polling station, they can vote without verification?

Witness: I talked about well known persons whose identities would not be in doubt.

Counsel: Now, Dr. Afari-Gyan, we are talking here in respect of 705 registrations, and there are 50 double registrations?

Witness: Yes my lord.

Counsel: That is about 7 per cent of the 705

Witness: You are correct.

Counsel: Now, who undertook these registrations; was it temporary workers of the EC or permanent workers of the EC.

Witness: It was a team made up of officials of the EC….

Counsel: Temporary or permanent?

Witness: Permanent.

Counsel: They went abroad to register Ghanaians, they registered 705 and managed to have 50 double registrations. Was the registration a biometric registration?

Witness: My lords, yes, it was a biometric registration.

Counsel: So these people were registered in the same location, I presume?

Witness: No, the foreign registrations took place in 28 locations.

Counsel: Now, these double registrations obviously took place in the same location?

Witness: If it’s Dubai, then Dubai…yes, different locations but in each instance, it was at the same location.

Counsel: And a biometric registration in the same location resulted in double registration?

Witness: My lords, yes, if I may explain…during the main registration, we experienced thousands….

Counsel: Doctor, can you please answer the question then you can explain.

Witness: I said yes… (Justice Atuguba interrupts)

Justice Atuguba: To solve the problem, you answer his question directly, if there is a relevant explanation, and then it follows after the direct answer….

Witness: …You see, if your picture is taken during the registration for example, and you don’t want the picture, if the registration officer does not edit the first picture taken, but take another picture, then it would come as double registration. There were many instances during the main registration where it occurred.

Counsel: Dr Afari-Gyan, if we are to go by the reason you have given, it means the national register is in fact bloated by 50 per cent.

Witness: Not at all, my lords. Again, if I may explain: We have a process we go through to eliminate the multiple registrations, in fact in the main exercise, we eliminated about 8,000 multiple registrations after going through that process. We call it a process of de-duplication….

Counsel: Dr. Afari-Gyan, you can say that now because we are dealing with only 705 registrations which, however, is part of the national register.

Witness: My lord, I have admitted that

Counsel: Now, most of these foreign registrations, voting were done by proxies?

Witness: My lords, I couldn’t say…I cannot tell you who were here and who were not here…

Counsel: So that in the event they voted by proxy, the explanation you have offered would not prevail?

Witness: They would.

Counsel: Different people can come by proxy with two different IDs and they would be allowed to vote…Do you agree that different people can come with different IDs and vote by proxy…?

Witness: Possible if the pictures occur two times.

Counsel: So it’s possible?

Witness: If the pictures occur two times, it is possible.

Omanhene Scenario

Mr. Addison asked Dr. Afari-Gyan to show the court where in the instance of a chief being allowed to vote without biometric verification would be recorded and the commissioner after initially saying “it will not be recorded anywhere,” changed his story to “it will be recorded to be among the people who have voted.”

Counsel then sought to know if there was a place on the pink sheet where that information would be recorded and Dr Afari-Gyan said “the C1 will be the place where that information will be recorded.”

Counsel: What C1 says?

Witness: what is the number of ballot issued to voters on the voters Register?

Mr. Addison then suggested to the witness that if a chief is not verified by the machine before voting that information will be entered in C3 but Dr Afari-Gyan said “No”

Counsel asked the witness to read the instruction in C3 and he said it was voters who were identified but not with the verification machine.

Then Mr. Addison said “But the Omanhene was not verified by the BVD and so the information should be recorded in C3 to which Dr. Afari-Gyan disagreed.

Daily Printouts & Exhibition

Dr. Afari-Gyan said to the extent possible daily printouts were issued to the political parties and added that if the machines developed faults at some point, it meant the printout for the day could not be given.

Dr. Afari-Gyan also told the court that, if nothing had gone wrong with the machine the EC itself was supposed to have daily printouts of the registration exercise.

Initially, Dr. Afari-Gyan told the court that he did not know if the NPP got the EC’s provisional register but after further probe by counsel, he said “no party was given the provisional register.”

He said the register was exhibited for every voter to ensure his or her particulars were correctly captured and added “it was an opportunity for the EC to check if the correct data had been collected. It was also for people to object names that were in the register but who were not supposed to be.”

The commissioner said at the time he put out the register he did not know exactly the number of people who did not appear on the provisional register even though they registered

By William Yaw Owusu & Raphael Ofori-Adeniran

Source: Daily Guide/Ghana



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