Fifi Fiavi Kwetey —  General Secretary, NDC
Fifi Fiavi Kwetey — General Secretary, NDC

NDC demands probe into stolen biometric machines

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has called for an immediate investigation into the alleged theft of certain election equipment from the Electoral Commission’s (EC’s) headquarters in Accra. 


The party, at a press conference yesterday, said the sensitive nature of the missing equipment, which included critical biometric machines could potentially compromise the integrity of the December elections.

The General Secretary of the NDC, Fifi Fiavi Kwetey, who addressed the media, said the “lackadaisical attitude and dismissive responses” from the EC officials concerning the alleged theft was unacceptable and an insult of the intelligence of every Ghanaian.

“The recent theft of critical biometric equipment under the supposed 'secure' watch of the Electoral Commission is not just an alarming oversight; it is a clear and present danger to our electoral integrity,” he said.

Mr Kwetey said but for the vigilance of some whistle blowers who informed the party about the missing equipment, the EC would not have informed stakeholders of elections and the public.

“But for the vigilance of a courageous whistleblower who alerted the NDC, and the subsequent probing by our parliamentarians , the shocking theft of crucial biometric equipment at the EC's heavily guarded headquarters would have remained shrouded in secrecy,” he said.

Mr Kwetey explained that the cover up by the EC was part of the government’s deliberate “strategic” steps toward winning elections at all costs by ensuring institutional decay in the country. 
For example, he said the government had appointed partisan and biased members of the New Patriotic Party to independent institutions such as the judiciary and the EC. 


Mr Kwetey said the stolen equipment had grave technical and security implications although over time, some top officials and commissioners of the EC had made pronouncements that were not only weak and inadequate but also indicative of a troubling lack of understanding of the complexities of electoral security and their broader implications by the commissioners.

He said the assertion that the laptops contained no EC information and thus their theft posed no risk or impact apart from their financial loss was not only weak and shallow but also dangerously misleading and naive.

“Their claim is that the laptops are merely components of the Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) kits and can only interact or interfere with the EC’s database system when they are activated with activation codes ,and therefore the stolen laptops will have no implications since no one will be able to activate them is lame,” he said.

However, Mr Kwetey said each laptop, each piece of equipment in the EC's inventory, held the potential to influence the electoral process significantly.  “The theft of such devices raises critical questions about the possibility of insider threats or external breaches, which could lead to unauthorised access to sensitive systems,” he said. 


To help restore trust and inject some fresh air of integrity into the electoral system, the NDC General Secretary said the EC must provide answers to some 35 questions posed to officials of the Commission at an Inter Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting addressing the status, recovery efforts, and oversight regarding the stolen biometric equipment.

The party also demanded an immediate and comprehensive investigation into the theft of the BVR laptops and related biometric equipment, including a forensic audit of the voters register.

“This investigation must be conducted by an independent body, supplemented with international observers, to ensure neutrality and thoroughness. “The outcome must provide a detailed report that not only comprehensively identifies those actually responsible but also outlines significant corrective measures to prevent such breaches in the future,” he said.

The party also called for a complete audit of the EC's inventory and security measures. “This audit should encompass all BVR and Biometric Verification Devices and must be carried out by an independent auditor to verify the integrity of all electoral materials and processes,” he said.

The Director of Elections of the NDC, Dr Edward Omane Boamah, told the Daily Graphic in an interview that the EC could not be trusted because they denied that the equipment had gone missing in the first place. 

“The only way to rebuild the trust is for the EC to answer our 35 questions and agree for the independent investigation to be conducted,” he said. 

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