Reliable information intercepted by Whatsup News about the planned budget for the Electoral Commission (EC) activities towards the 2020 elections, show that officials will be greased with a total of GHC 28,195,150 in per diem.
This amount is from the total of GHC 400 million recently approved to the EC by the Ghanaian Parliament to conduct its activities this year, including compiling the controversial new voters’ register and a new biometric system.
Beneficiaries of the per diem will include the EC Commissioner, Jean Mensah, her deputies, other commissioners, directors, drivers, and election officers.
The amount will mostly be spent on conducting meetings, monitoring, recruitment and interviews, among others. For instance, a staggering amount of GHC 3. 2million will be spent on per diems for when the EC meets with groups like the Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) among others.
Approximately GHC 16 million will be spent on EC officers monitoring activities across the country; an amount of GHC 3.7 million will be spent on monitoring exhibition processes of the EC, while GHC 5.2 will be spent on per diem for officers who would be recruiting and interviewing election officers across the country.
Interestingly, the per diem to the top officials of the EC is only slightly lower than what would be spent on training tens of thousands of election officers across the country. While top officials will be chomping on GHC 28.1 million in per diem, they will spend GHC 32 million on training election officers.
This juicy per diem is also more than an item in the EC budget dubbed “Conduct of Registration Exercise”, which amounts to GHC 21 million.
The only other items more than the per diem allocated to the EC top dogs is the payment of allowances to registration officers (GHC 161.5 million) and procurement of registration materials (GHC 151 million).
The EC is under extreme criticism for rushing to the Ghanaian parliament to demand a budget of GHC 400 million to undertake compilation of a new voters register and biometric system. Critics have questioned the EC’s motive particularly because these systems were recently used successfully to conduct the nationwide district assemblies’ elections and the referendum for the six new regions.