Election 2020: The NPP’s numbers game shakes the NDC’s exuberant confidence again

In one of the most popular words during the 2016 general elections, “we are in a comfortable lead” resonates among many Ghanaians.

Election 2020: The NPP’s numbers game shakes the NDC’s exuberant confidence again

Pulse Ghana

The date was December 8, 2016. Ghanaians had successfully cast their votes as former Electoral Commission chairperson Charlotte Osei worked hard with her people to give Ghanaians the verdict on their cast vote.

New Patriotic Party who were then in opposition had made plans to be vigilant on election grounds as their previous court battle over the 2012 election results had fallen through.

In a narrative that was put in a sophisticated manner, the NPP had put together a team of genius to find ways to do the work of the EC with half the time. The description looked like a real test of data science’s ability to calm the nerves of partners and shake the grounds of the opposition. A thorough look into what it actually was showed simple arithmetic in an organised manner.

Party observers are allowed in each polling stations in Ghana during elections. The NPP took that advantage to have their people also record ballot counts after the end of the poll, send quickly to their own collation centre, do the quick maths and find their standing before the Electoral Commission declares election results.

A press conference that followed was where the drama started. The NPP and the NDC hosted a series of press conferences where they accused each other of interfering with the electoral process. NPP criticised the EC’s silence of around 15 hours after the polls close while the NDC responded claiming their opponents could only win the presidential election by resorting to disruption of peace.

As the back and forth went on, the Electoral Commission’s declaration of NPP as the winners of the 2016 general elections ended His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s trial to be Ghana’s president.

Lessons were learned per the conversation and the NPP’s swift response to election results at polling stations and collation centres was not going to be a one-party affair in the next election. On the unknown in the future that is currently known, it probably turned out to be another one-party agenda.

Ghana’s 2020 election took place on Monday, December 7, 2020. Having shifted a Farmer’s Day holiday to Election Day, Ghanaians were entreated to have an eased election in a year that had proved tough for many in a coronavirus COVID-19 era.

Just as had been in the 2016 elections, early results from the camp of NPP started trickling in the late hours of Election Day. What was missing was the biggest opposition’s rebuttal to what had seemed a huge blow to confidence in 2016. Despite the words of the National Democratic Congress’ representatives during their press conference in 2016, actions were a different story.

By 1am on Tuesday, December 8, 2020, the NPP were once again hastily attempting to shatter the confidence of members of the National Democratic Congress.

In a tally room reported to have had only media houses with a strong alliance to the NPP, work around the clock pushed out early results only the NPP could justify shaking tables on all front.

Deep within and a general overview proved the table shaking was working.

Sammy Gyamfi, the National Communications Officer of the NDC did a host of press conferences to condemn the NPP’s claims and encourage supporters to keep the faith.

Amidst all this, the NPP has subtle messages that endorsed Nana Addo Dankwa as the next president of Ghana.

Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah among other members of the NPP openly hid their verdict on what their numbers had shown.

Ghana’s Electoral Commission was clear on being the only body to announce the winner of the 2020 presidential election. The two main political parties knew this. And despite the frantic effort to repeat a numbers game that eased the anxiety of their observers, the NPP never claimed a win. The NDC rebutted but never claimed a win too. However, the atmosphere seems to know the winner based on the incumbent’s approach towards the results of the 2020 election. How will this turn out in 2020 when the EC finally makes the much-awaited call.

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