Pollster Ben Ephson has reminded political parties that regardless of whoever heads the Electoral Commission, their votes cannot be protected until they take up that task themselves.
In an interview with TV3 in reaction to President John Mahama's appointment of Mrs. Charlotte Osei as the new Chairperson of Ghana's Electoral Commission, Mr. Ephson noted that political parties have no option under the constitution except to accept the president's appointment.
Mr. Ephson also reminded Ghanaians to disabuse their minds of the perception that the head of the EC has an individual mandate, adding she will do so with a team of commissioners.
"I think that the post of the head of the EC is not an individual affair. There are about seven commissioners and the chairperson acts in concert so when there was so much noise as to who will be the EC chair I was surprised because if you are a political party and you don't protect your votes at the election, whoever is the EC boss cannot protect you".
"I think that the issue of Dr. Afari Djan not having left the commission well composed I disagree. Once the Supreme Court threw out the election petition, it is deemed that the election was free and fair. Yes; the Supreme Court said that there must be electoral reforms and these reforms had been going on from 1992 from voting in a non-transparent ballot box to a transparent ballot box"
Mr. Ephson said the new EC boss would have to develop a thick skin for the challenges ahead.
"I think that Madam Osei's task should be made easier if she decides to rely on the very experience hands and look at the Electoral commission at all levels. She must be able to have a very thick skin for the challenges ahead internally and externally; and also from the NCCE where she was, there wasn't much focus on her so she must now grow an extra thick skin for her new role as the EC boss".