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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Accountability, contract officers and the integrity of the 2012 election outcome in Ghana
Author:Alhassan, Ishaq Akmey
Periodical:Journal of African Elections (ISSN 1609-4700)
Geographic term:Ghana
presidential elections
election management bodies
Abstract:The Electoral Commission of Ghana (EC) has successfully managed five out of the six elections since the adoption of Ghana's 1992 Republican Constitution, which gave legal status to the country's democratisation process despite some administrative lapses over the years. The 2012 presidential election, however, served as a credibility test for the EC. In this paper my main objective is to analyse critically the Ghana 2012 election petition as an expression of mistrust in, and dissatisfaction with, the EC's performance. I argue that, at least in the case of Ghana, the success of an electoral process is largely a function of the human factor, not necessarily the legal frameworks and regulations in force. Using the theory of accountability, I analyse the role of temporary election officers in eroding public confidence in electoral processes. I also draw attention to some implications of Ghana's Supreme Court judgment on election administration in future. My recommendations include punishment for officers whose negligence causes avoidable political tensions, to demonstrate the state's determination to demand accountability from election officers on behalf of citizens. To support this argument, my study uses thematic content analysis of the petitioners' court affidavit, the court's judgment and legal opinions proffered through media outlets. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]