CODEO at a press briefing on Thursday morning [December 10, 2020] confirmed the position of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) that the 2020 general elections is full of inconsistencies.
The group said it monitored the election by deploying 1,502 Parallel Voter Tabulation (PVT) Observers across the 275 constituencies in the country’s 16 regions.
Observers who were deployed used a nationally representative random sample of polling stations located in every region and constituency of the country.
“CODEO appeals to Ghanaians to remain calm, law-abiding and allow the systems to work. CODEO further commends the maturity shown by Ghanaians throughout the voting, counting, and collating processes” the Acting Chair of CODEO, Sheikh Arimiyawo Shaibu said at the press briefing.
CODEO’s 2020 PVT Estimates of Presidential Election
The figures obtained by CODEO are not the same as the once obtained by the Electoral Commission.
For instance, while President-elect Akufo-Addo obtained 51.302% in the official EC results, CODEO estimated the President’s results in its PVT at 50.98%.
CODEO’s estimates for the National Democratic Congress candidate John Dramani Mahama was much closer to the EC’s official results. Mahama polled 47.359% in the official results and 47.66% in CODEO’s PVT estimates.
“The official voter turnout rate of 79.0% announced by the EC is slightly outside the PVT voter turnout confidence range based on the estimated turnout rate of 79.69% and error margin of ±0.46%. It is worth noting, however, that this could be due to exclusion of the outstanding results from Techiman South Constituency with a total number of 128,018 registered voters”.
About the PVT Methodology
The PVT is a scientific election observation technique that combines well-established statistical principles and Information Communication Technology (ICT) to observe elections.
It involves deploying trained accredited Observers to a nationally representative random sample of polling stations. On Election-Day, PVT Observers observe the entire polling process and transmit reports about the conduct of the polls and the official vote count in real-time to a central election observation database, using the Short Message Service (SMS) platform.
The PVT technique has been deployed successfully around the world to promote electoral integrity and help defend the rights of citizens to vote and to protect such rights when exercised.
The first PVT was conducted in the Philippines in 1986. Since then, the methodology has been deployed in election observation in Bulgaria, Chile, Croatia, Guyana, Albania, Bangladesh, Belarus, Indonesia, Georgia, Macedonia, Slovakia, Montenegro, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru and Ukraine.
In Africa, the methodology has been deployed successfully in Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Uganda, Burundi, Sierra Leone, Zambia, Ghana, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Kenya and Tunisia.
Difference between PVT and pre-election surveys
Unlike pre-election surveys (which track voter intentions) or exit polls (which track voter recollections), the PVT is based on the actual behavior of electorates in an election.
“PVT Observers do not speak to voters about the choices they made at the polls to predict the outcome of an election. Rather, after observing the entire voting and counting process, PVT Observers record the official vote count as announced by election officials at polling stations and rapidly transmit this information to an observation centre via coded text message. Consequently, the PVT data is collected directly from polling stations,” CODEO said in a statement.