Expand voter registration centers -STRANEK Africa to EC
ADOPT AN EXPANSIONIST APPROACH TO THE LIMITED VOTERS’ REGISTRATION EXERCISE
The Electoral Commission of Ghana endeavours to express the will of the people by conducting free, fair, and honest elections. It was established to supervise electoral proceedings and guard against electoral fraud.
In the past, the Electoral Commission used lots of registration centres when it opened for limited registration exercise. In 2019, the Electoral Commission used 1500 registration centres to register 500,000 people. Currently, the registration exercise is taking place at only 268 District Offices of Electoral Commission.
According to the Electoral Commission, Ghanaians who have turned 18 years and other eligible voters who could not register in 2020 are to take opportunity for this registration exercise.
In line with Article 45 of the 1992 constitution, the Electoral Commission (EC) has the view of registering about 1,350,000 voters. With Ghana’s growing population and the fact that most Ghanaians live in remote areas, how can they commute to the nearest District Offices when some of them have to cross rivers, use immotorable roads or travel long distances to get to the nearest District Offices?
STRANEK-AFRICA has observed that the entire limited voter registration is fraught with challenges. Key amongst them are network connectivity issues resulting in the late start of the registration, long queues to
register among others. It is obvious the Electoral Commission’s current arrangement on the registration exercise is utterly undignifying and an affront on guaranteed rights of every Ghanaian citizen above 18 years old and of sound mind.
As if that is not enough, with an unwavering determination, the Electoral Commission is bent on violating CI 91 as amended by CI 126.
STRANEK AFRICA believes the Electoral Commission must rethink its strategies by testing the efficacy of its equipment and network connectivity. Also, more centres must be opened to encourage all qualified persons to register and participate in the election of our political leaders, be it at the local, constituency, or national level.
The Electoral Commission must be receptive towards stakeholders’ engagement to fill the gaps and eliminate any bottlenecks.
This will reduce the tension and the sleepless nights some people endure to register, as well as reduce the cost of embarking on long journeys to register.
Therefore, we add our voices to the many calling for the expansion of registration centres, and may this Memorial Day of Kwame Nkrumah prick the bottom of the Electoral Commission to not fail our democracy.
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