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Political Parties Raise Red Flags Over EC’s Limited Voter Registration

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Some seven political parties in the country are unhappy with the decision by the Electoral Commission (EC) to restrict the upcoming voter registration exercise to its district offices.

According to the political parties, such a move would disenfranchise a number of Ghanaians who have attained the voting age.

They want the commission to instead open up the process for the exercise to be conducted at the electoral areas.

The seven political parties have thus promised not to rest until the EC registers every eligible Ghanaian who has attained the voting age.

This follows the EC’s announcement of commencing a limited voter registration for eligible Ghanaians who turned 18 years after the 2020 registration exercise and other eligible voters from September 12, 2023, to October 2, 2023.

According to the Chairperson of the EC, Jean Mensa, the exercise would be held at all the 268 district offices of the EC across the country.

The parties are: the Great Consolidated Popular Party (GCPP), Liberal Party of Ghana (LPG), Convention People’s Party (CPP), People’s National Congress (PNC), All Progressives Congress (APC), National Democratic Party (NDP), and the Ghana Freedom Party (GFP).

During a press conference held in Accra today, Monday, August 21, 2023, the General Secretary of the GCPP, Frederick Ato Dadzie, said the intended exercise would only disenfranchise some eligible Ghanaians, for which reason they would do anything within their means to ensure that the EC resorts to other means.

Below are excerpts from the address:

“Some Civil Society members present also opined that to ensure the electoral process is participatory and decentralised, it should include if not all then some electoral areas in a cluster form as done in the past. At least if the EC cannot do more than 1,500 registration centres as done in 2019, they should maintain the status quo. We therefore suggested that, the EC can use 7 days to do the registration exercise at the electoral areas and use another 7 days to do a mop-up exercise at their district offices to even save them time and cost.”

“The Electoral Commissioners informed us that they have taken our concerns and “will get back to us”, a phrase we are well accustomed to and so pushed further for timelines, and they indicated by close of day Monday.”

“Most of us were therefore taken aback when we only heard and saw on radio and TV that the Electoral Commission has set a date for the registration exercise and will use only their district offices as registration centres.

“In conclusion, we also want to publicly call on the Electoral Commission through its Chair Madam Jean Mensa to rescind their decision and make the process more accessible and painless to enable the average Ghanaian who is eligible to exercise their right and entitlement to be registered as a voter.”

“This will reflect in the EC’s commitment in building a solid and credible institution to protect the strong and enviable record of Ghana as a beacon of democracy that will continue to be worthy of emulation across the continent.”

 

 

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