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NDC constituency secretary grabbed for registering children

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Police in the Western Region have arrested Bernard Afful, the Mpohor Constituency Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), for registering persons who are under the constitutionally required age of 18 in the ongoing limited voter registration exercise.

Afful, 59, was arrested together with Rojer Miller, 33 years old, proprietor of Voice of Christ Preparatory School in Mpohor, who assisted Afful in the nefarious activity. According to reports, Police in Mpohor received intelligence that the proprietor of Voice of Christ Preparatory School had gone to register his son, one Gildolf Andoh, aged 16, and his colleagues in the ongoing Voter Registration Exercise at Mpohor. The proprietor, after registering the minors, retained their voter ID Cards.

The police, acting on the intelligence, proceeded to the school, where they arrested suspects Rojer Miller and Bernard Afful. Upon searching the proprietor’s room, the Police found five voter ID Cards bearing the names of Gildolf Andoh, Christabel Obeng Damoah, Christiana Assan, Spend Love Nana Boah, and Edward Ntiakoh, students of the Voice of Christ Preparatory School.

Afful and Miller, upon interrogation, admitted to having sent the five students to the registration center to be registered. Suspects Rojer Miller and Bernard Afful were detained to assist investigations while frantic efforts are being made to invite the five students and obtain their birth certificates to authenticate the veracity of their ages. The two have since been arraigned before the court for prosecution.

The actions of the NDC Constituency secretary have brought to light the sincerity of the National Democratic Congress in its frantic efforts to discredit the Electoral Commission (EC) and undermine the credibility of the election management body.

The NDC has been at odds with the Electoral Commission since losing the 2016 general elections. In 2020, the party challenged the election results declared by the EC and boycotted the Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC), a committee set up to bring together stakeholders in Ghana’s election processes.

It was also found that all five minors registered by the NDC Secretary used the guarantor system. This has further raised questions about the efficacy of the guarantor system and why the NDC has insisted on its usage. The leadership of the NDC has used all available means to oppose the Electoral Commission’s attempts to abolish the guarantor system and stick to using the GhanaCard as the primary identification document for voter registration in the country.

Former Minority Leader and NDC Member of Parliament (MP) for Tamale South in the Northern Region, Haruna Iddrisu, stated last year that the party would resist any attempt by the Electoral Commission (EC) to scrap the guarantor system as a requirement for voter registration exercises. When the EC submitted amendments to the law guiding the conduct of elections to make the Ghana Card the only primary identification document for registering for the Voter ID card, the NDC minority frustrated the process and prevented the passage of the amendment into law.

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