As Ghanaians prepare to go and cast their ballot on Monday, December 7, 2020, the Founder and General Overseer of the Alabaster Prayer Ministry Prophet Kofi Oduro has asked his church members to vote for a man with integrity and character.
Speaking in a church service on Sunday, December 6, 2020, the man of God said voters should not just allow themselves to be deceived by the so-called achievements of a government but seek a candidate with an unquestionable character.
Prophet Oduro said Ghanaian voters should not vote for a candidate that uses state resources to buy houses for girls who will later speak ”nonsense” on social media or a candidate who sleeps with women who visit them in the office.
Voting, he explained, is a civic responsibility, hence Ghanaians should elect someone who would manage the resources of the state well.
He said the church members should know that voting for someone means that you have given your rights and privileges to the person.
He said when the power goes into the hands of a wrong person, the voter should know that they have put the wrong person there.
Meanwhile, he opines that a candidate who claims to have constructed hospitals and other infrastructure is only engaging in mediocrity because these things are constitutional rights voters must enjoy.
He said these things are my rights as a citizen. I don’t need to beg before you do those things. I put you there to do these things for me. That is not what we use to vote for a candidate. We don’t vote because there is free SHS, we don’t because somebody built an airport. That is mediocrity. That is not a campaign message. A campaign message should be integrity, character, an honest person. We need a man with spiritual integrity, financial integrity, and a man with a good character.”
He wondered why we should live in a country where police officers use their resources to buy their uniforms.
The Electoral Commission (EC) has announced persons who have lost their voter ID cards would have the opportunity to vote on December 7.
A public announcement issued by the electoral body said: “As a registered voter, you can still vote on election day even if your Voter ID Card is missing!”
The EC explained that persons whose voter cards are missing would have to go to the centres they registered, mention their names to officers and get it checked in the Name Reference list.
A total number of 17,027,641 eligible voters are expected to exercise their franchise on December 7.
Out of the total number of registered voters, females recorded the highest number of registered voters with 8,810,283 which represents about 51.74 percent while males had 8,217,358 representing 48.26 percent of the total number of registered voters.
A Deputy National Campaign Manager for the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr. Mustapha Hamid, is claiming that a vote for former President John Dramani Mahama would mean a fugitive would be presiding over as president.
He says a vote for the former president will be detrimental to Ghana’s growth if John Dramani Mahama is voted into power as President.
Speaking on the Airbus scandal, the Deputy Campaign Manager said: “Whichever way you look at it, former President John Mahama has been accused in court documents, appearing in three countries for his personal involvement in an international bribery scandal valued at 5 million euros. What this means is that John Mahama could soon face the International Criminal Justice System. This is the man on the ballot paper that will be handed over to you on Monday. He will be presented to you as a presidential candidate”.
He accused Mahama of failing to travel to the UK since the bribery scandal was reported.
He said “when you choose him, you risk choosing a president who may be a fugitive in France, the UK, and the USA. Prosecutors in all three countries, in striking a deal with Airbus for the fines, made it clear that it will not stop them from pursuing the individuals involved. This means that candidate Mahama risks arrest if he steps anywhere near those shores.”
“Can you imagine a President of the Republic of Ghana with an International arrest warrant on his head? A President who would not be able to travel freely abroad to fight and negotiate for Ghana? That is the risk of voting for John Mahama. The alternative is indeed scarier than we all thought,” he added.
Deputy campaign manager for the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Dr. Mustapha Abdul Hamid has appealed to personnel of the various security agencies to vote massively for President Akufo-Addo to do more for them.
Addressing a press conference on Monday, November 30, 2020, he said the government has transformed the various security agencies through the distribution of logistics and vehicles to enhance their work.
He said it would be proper for the security personnel to retain the NPP so they will consolidate the gains made.
He asked them to look at their conditions and reflect on their profession and the government that has constantly equipped them to perform their duties as security personnel.
He stressed it is only when the NPP comes into office that the security agencies see progress.
“I say to you, for the sake of your profession and the future of Ghana, vote number 1 on the ballot tomorrow in the Special voters’ exercise, Insha Allah, in our next term, we shall do more”.
To Ghanaians, he appealed to them to come out in their numbers on December 7, 2020, and vote.
He admonished the members of the NPP to focus on the message and their achievements.
No government he asserted has achieved what the NPP has achieved in its first term since our 4th republic.
The NDC he alleged has initiated moves to throw mud at the president through fake news and doctored videos because they have realized they will lose the 2020 polls.
A prominent ally of Donald Trump has urged him to drop his efforts to overturn his loss to Joe Biden in the US presidential election.
Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie called the president’s legal team a “national embarrassment”.
President Trump has refused to concede the election, making unsubstantiated claims of widespread electoral fraud.
Many Republicans have supported his legal efforts but a small but growing number have broken ranks.
On Saturday Mr Trump suffered a major blow in Pennsylvania, after a judge dismissed a lawsuit from the Trump campaign seeking to invalidate millions of mail-in votes in the battleground state.
In a scathing ruling, Judge Matthew Brann said his court had been presented with “strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations”.
The move paves the way for Pennsylvania to on Monday certify Mr Biden’s win – the Democratic president-elect leads there by more than 80,000 votes.
Mr Biden is projected to defeat President Trump 306 to 232 in the US electoral college, which determines who becomes president – far above the 270 he needs to win.
What did Chris Christie say?
Speaking to ABC’s This Week programme on Sunday, Mr Christie, a former New Jersey governor, said: “Quite frankly, the conduct of the president’s legal team has been a national embarrassment”.
He said the Trump camp was often discussing election fraud “outside the courtroom, but when they go inside the courtroom they don’t plead fraud and they don’t argue fraud”.
“I have been a supporter of the president’s. I voted for him twice. But elections have consequences, and we cannot continue to act as if something happened here that didn’t happen.”
Mr Christie was the first governor to endorse Mr Trump as a presidential candidate back in 2016. He also helped prepare the US president for his debates with Mr Biden earlier this year.
He singled out for criticism Sidney Powell, a lawyer who appeared with Trump’s legal team during a press conference on Thursday who, without providing evidence, said that electronic voting systems switched millions of ballots to Biden, and that he also won thanks to “communist money”.
But on Sunday the Trump campaign issued a statement distancing themselves from Ms Powell, saying she “is practicing law on her own” and was “not a member of the Trump legal team”.
A tweet from President Trump earlier this month explicitly named her as part of the team.
On Sunday other Republicans also urged President Trump to concede.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan told CNN on Sunday that the Trump camp’s continued efforts to overturn the election results were “beginning to look like we’re a banana republic”.
In a post on Twitter, Gov Hogan said Mr Trump should “stop golfing and concede”.
Michigan Representative Fred Upton told CNN the voters in his battleground state “spoke” by choosing Mr Biden, while North Dakota Senator Kevin Cramer said in an interview to NBC it was “past time to start a transition”, although he stopped short of accepting Mr Biden’s victory.
What has the Biden camp been up to?
President Trump’s refusal to concede has complicated the process that normally follows a US election.
Joe Biden is to announce his first cabinet appointments on Tuesday, said Ron Klain, the president-elect’s choice as White House chief-of-staff.
Speaking to ABC on Sunday, Mr Klain called on the Trump administration to facilitate the transition.
“A record number of Americans rejected the Trump presidency, and since then Donald Trump’s been rejecting democracy,” he said.
And he revealed that the Biden campaign was preparing for a “scaled-down” inauguration on 20 January due to the worsening coronavirus outbreak.
With millions of ballots still being counted, Trump awoke in an agitated state, tweeting or retweeting messages that sought to undermine confidence in the vote counting process. At least three were labeled by Twitter as “disputed” or “misleading.”
Several top Republicans, including those close to Senate Republican leaders, were privately dismissive of Trump’s suggestion that ballots shouldn’t be counted after Election Day.
And even his own campaign said in a call with reporters that Trump’s remaining path to victory will rely on those still-uncounted ballots in places where the process of tabulating results has taken longer.
What emerged was a picture of a President intent on using all the tools at his disposal to force a victory, including wielding misinformation about the integrity of the vote and an onslaught of legal maneuvers, even as the results were still coming in and his advisers insisted the math would turn in his favor.
As the day unfolded, the Trump team’s legal strategy was becoming clearer. The campaign said it would request a recount in Wisconsin, which CNN projects Biden will win, and demanded vote counting be halted in Michigan. A team of advisers mobilized to Philadelphia, which Trump had signaled before Tuesday would be the site of intensive legal efforts should results show him losing.
And Trump supporters began receiving a barrage of fundraising solicitations to finance what will amount to an expensive and drawn-out legal fight.
“If we count all legal ballots, the President wins,” campaign manager Bill Stepien told reporters on a quickly-arranged mid-morning conference call.
Trump, however, has projected less optimism in those routes and has instead sought to question the large batches of outstanding votes that have tipped some states toward Biden.
“They are finding Biden votes all over the place — in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan. So bad for our Country!” he wrote on Twitter.
Aides are encouraging Trump to stay in the fight, though Trump hardly needs the nudge, a campaign adviser said on Wednesday. Trump has been livid watching Biden’s lead increase in states such as Michigan and Wisconsin.
“He feels it’s being stolen from him,” the adviser said.
Trump’s grip-like command of the Republican Party remains firmly in place, and does not appear poised to loosen after Tuesday night’s results. Few Republican elected officials spoke out against Trump’s attempts to delegitimize the vote counting process. Instead, most were silent or at least circumspect as the situation plays out.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who won his own reelection race on Tuesday, suggested at a news conference in Louisville that Trump’s premature declaration of victory was not binding.
“Claiming you win the election is different from finishing the counting,” he said.
Privately, however, those within Trump’s party were beginning to undercut his claims that fraudulent voting was leading to late Democratic surges in critical battlegrounds.
“No, we don’t agree with what’s coming out of the White House,” a senior GOP official said. “We see no credible reports of fraud or anything improper.”
Trump had long signaled he would not accept the results of a close election that showed him losing, but how he planned to proceed remained uncertain. He said in his wee-hours statement from the East Room that he would challenge the election results in the United State Supreme Court, but so far on Wednesday his legal team was still formulating plans in individual states where the margins remain razor-thin, including in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Trump’s campaign signaled to its allies it plans to launch extensive legal challenges in those states. Stepien told campaign surrogates in a telephone call Wednesday morning that campaign lawyers are already on the ground in anticipation of filings, a person familiar with the matter said.
Trump campaign officials told allies on the call that the first likely step would be requesting recounts in states including Wisconsin and Michigan.
A few hours later, the campaign said in a statement it would request a recount in Wisconsin, though under Wisconsin law a campaign can’t petition for a recount until the state’s Election Commission completes the canvass from county election boards.
How much a recount would aid Trump’s efforts isn’t clear; a recount of the presidential vote in 2016 only netted Trump an additional few hundred votes. Biden was leading Trump by more than 20,000 votes as of Wednesday.
The Trump campaign also released a statement saying it had filed a lawsuit in Michigan asking the state to halt vote counting until it receives “meaningful access” to observe the opening of ballots and the counting process.
CNN teams in Michigan have not seen evidence that the suit has actually been filed. While the Trump campaign has said the lawsuit was filed in the Michigan Court of Claims, the docket clerk for the Court of Claims, Morgan Adams, told CNN that the court has not received the filing.
Trump signaled before the election his lawyers would intervene in Pennsylvania shortly after voting concluded, and officials have told Trump allies they anticipate a filing there in the next few days. It wasn’t yet clear what would constitute the basis for a legal challenge in Pennsylvania.
A large collection of Trump advisers, including his son Eric, senior advisers and daughter-in-law Lara Trump, former Florida attorney general Pam Bondi and senior adviser Corey Lewandowski were traveling to Philadelphia ahead of expected legal challenges.
Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani tweeted he had mobilized to Philadelphia, but it wasn’t clear if he was acting in an official capacity for the campaign.
Trump had no events on his schedule Wednesday, and Vice President Mike Pence’s schedule was similarly empty. Both were expected to remain in Washington to consult with campaign and legal teams about their next steps.
The previous evening, deliberations over what Trump would say when he emerged after midnight were at times intense, according to people familiar with the matter. Trump’s speech came around 2:30 a.m. ET, well after his rival spoke from Wilmington, Delaware. While teleprompters were set up for him to read from, he appeared to ad-lib much of his speech.
“This is without question the latest news conference I’ve ever had,” Trump said.
Speaking after him, Pence seemed to offer a drastically different message, saying that “while the votes continue to be counted, we’re going to remain vigilant.”
Trump openly acknowledged that he had felt better earlier in the evening on Tuesday, as invited guests nibbled on pigs-in-a-blanket and french fries on the State Floor of the White House and early results showed him edging former Vice President Joe Biden.
“Literally we were just all set to get outside and just celebrate something that was so beautiful, so good,” he said.
While 400 people had been invited to the party, far fewer actually attended, including several Fox News personalities and members of the President’s cabinet.
Trump made a brief appearance at the party early in the evening before retreating upstairs to his private residence. There, he conferred with a smaller group of campaign and White House advisers about how to proceed. A campaign “war room” had been established on the White House campus to provide Trump and his senior team real-time updates.
Other members of Trump’s inner-circle, including members of his family, held a more private results-viewing party from the family dining room, where large televisions had been wheeled in and a sofa set up.
Trump’s early confidence turned to indignation when Fox News, the network airing on large televisions set up throughout the White House, projected Biden would win Arizona. Trump’s campaign publicly called on the network to retract the projection and on Wednesday morning, the President’s campaign manager insisted to reporters that Arizona remained in play.
“Late-arriving votes cast closest to Election Day are the ones being counted now,” Bill Stepien said, adding they expect between two-thirds and 70% of the remaining uncounted ballots would be “coming to the President.”
“That math adds up to a margin of around 30,000 votes in the President’s favor,” Stepien said, adding that Arizona “will come the President’s way.”
Biden’s campaign offered an entirely different assessment on its own briefing call, saying they believed the former vice president had won in Arizona and was on track to win Michigan and Wisconsin.
Despite the confidence projected by the Trump campaign, not everyone on that team was feeling optimistic waking up on Wednesday.
“We are clearly in a corner here,” one senior official said.
But the official cautioned that the campaign is not yet out of the game, and campaign officials have continued to claim both publicly and privately that they think they have shot if they can get Arizona and Nevada into their column.
Meanwhile, the Trump campaign was desperately fundraising the day after the election for resources to wage legal battles against election results. The campaign sent out six emails to supporters since midnight asking for money. Each of the solicitations has included the false claim that Democrats are trying to “steal” the election.
There is no evidence of nefarious activity surrounding the election count.
At a rally in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on the eve of the election day, Trump said campaign lawyers “will be going in and they’ll be fighting.”
CNN’s Jim Acosta, Jeff Zeleny, Sarah Westwood, Betsy Klein and Greg Clary contributed to this report.