NO WAY: CSOs in Ghana reject new voters’ register

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EC Chair, Mrs Jean Mensa

Some 18 Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Ghana have joined forces to kick against the country’s Electoral Commission’s (EC) decision to compile a new voters’ register.

The group, made up of a coalition of NGOs, some Civil Society Organizations(CSOs) and prominent individuals have dismissed the EC’s arguments as simply defective.

In a statement jointly issued on Thursday, January 16, 2020, the CSOs argued that the EC’s decision to change the voters’ register is based on “information provided by a single vendor or narrow set of vendors.”

“The EC has focused on technical issues as the major motivation for a new voters register. The Commission has mentioned the vulnerability of current systems and equipment,” the statement noted.

The CSOs include the Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition (GACC), IMANI Africa, SEND Ghana, Africa Centre for International Law and Accountability (ACILA), Financial Accountability and Transparency – Africa (FAT-Africa), Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) and a host of others.

Parliament of Ghana in December last year approved almost half-a-billion cedis for the compilation of a new voters’ register —following a petition by the Electoral Commision.

The EC argued that fingers cannot be read on the old register.

However, some political parties including the National Democratic Congress(NDC) have refused to back the decision.

The CSOs however advised that EC should update the existing software to make it efficient, replace faulty equipment and open up the electoral register for voters to verify their names.

“This is the more justified approach given time and resource considerations and indeed is the most technically feasible and defensible approach compared to totally replacing the entire system at great cost and running the nation through the trauma of another voter registration exercise.”

See full Statement below

By Jonathan Ofori, Daily Mail GH

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