If physical security cannot be guaranteed, how can election be secured – NDC quizzes EC – Myjoyonline

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The National Democratic Congress (NDC) is questioning the Electoral Commission’s (EC) ability to organise free and transparent elections since it is unable to protect basic electoral material.

According to the General Secretary of the NDC, Fifi Fiavi Kwetey, the electoral body in the buildup to elections should be able to ensure that none of the equipment is exposed to the risk of hacking or anything that has the ability to breach elections.

Speaking at the ‘Moment of Truth’ series on April 15, he said the EC has failed to secure these primary security procedures which raises concern about their ability to ensure free and fair elections.

“Let us consider the potential for these devices to be utilised in staging mock setups to test hacking strategies or to train personnel in circumventing security measures. The theft of such laptops must be seen as a direct threat to the integrity and security of our entire electoral system. It begs the question: if basic physical security cannot be maintained, how can we trust the EC to safeguard the sanctity of our electoral process?

He explained that the stolen Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) laptops from the EC’s custody did not merely cause financial loss to the State as the EC was suggesting but “reveal profound vulnerabilities and pose dire consequences for the integrity of our electoral system.”

Mr Kwetey’s comment was in response to the Director of Electoral Services at the EC, Dr Serebour Quaicoe’s comments on April 13 that there was no cause for alarm over the missing equipment since most of it have undergone the end-of-life process (a process where everything on the laptop is erased) and that the only concern should be about the financial loss to the state.

However, the NDC believes that the dismissal of this theft is not only shortsighted but also reflective of a perilous disregard for the broader implications on our electoral integrity.

On the back of this, the NDC quizzed “How can we stand by when critical and sensitive equipment, entrusted to the EC and under 24/7 CCTV surveillance to conduct free and fair elections, is treated with such negligence?

“These pieces of equipment are essential and carry a national security risk, which is precisely why they are monitored continuously. How then can such critical assets be compromised under constant watch?”

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