Ghana’s electoral body says confident of meeting November 7 election deadline

Ghana's Electoral Commission (EC) has affirmed it will meet the November deadline for the country's 2016 general election.

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Charlotte Osei EC Boss
Charlotte Osei EC Boss

This is against the backdrop of challenges with the voter’s register and fear of lack of funds for the elections.

Charlotte Osei EC Boss
Charlotte Osei EC Boss
Representatives of the EC told Ghana’s Legal and Constitutional Committee of Parliament Wednesday they would be ready by the November 7 deadline.

Since Ghana was ushered into constitutional rule in 1992, it has held its previous 6 presidential and parliamentary elections on December 7 but political pundits and indeed the political parties agree the date needs to be brought forward.

According to them, the December 7 election date leaves little room for preparations to hand over the administration of the country to the next elected government, especially when power changes hands from one political party to another.

But the optimism of the Commission is not shared by some members of the Legal and Constitutional Committee of Parliament.

Local radio Joy News says it has learnt that members of the committee are divided over the EC’s preparedness to proceed with the November 7 date.

It said while some members of the minority doubted the EC’s capability to meet the deadline, those on the majority side of the House were confident the EC would be able to meet the new deadline.

But the Vice-Chairman of the committee, George Loh, said the EC had assured the Committee of its preparedness to go along with the November 7 date and had no reason to doubt that.

Meanwhile, the EC has fixed Monday July 18-28, this year to allow person who registered as voters with the National Health Insurance (NHIS) cards and whose names have been deleted from the voters’ register to re-register.

This is in compliance with the Supreme Court’s order to the EC to delete the names of some 56,772 persons from the register.

The EC will accordingly publish the list of these persons in the national dailies and on its website as well as at the district, metropolitan and municipal assemblies throughout the country.

At a press conference in Accra on Wednesday, the Director of Electoral Services at the EC, Samuel Tetteh, said the commission had decided to increase the number of days for the exhibition of the register from 10 to 21 days.

Touching on the modalities for the exercise, Tetteh said all persons whose names would appear in the national dailies would have to report at the district offices of the EC and prove their eligibility before they would be allowed to re-register.

“They will go through the normal process of registration. You must be a citizen of Ghana, 18 years and also have an old existing ID card. You can also bring a passport or two guarantors,” he stated.

He maintained that the EC was ready to conduct the general election on November 7, this year, as had already been proposed. Enditem

Source:Xinhua/News Ghana

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