Hundreds of people poured out to the streets of Tamale, the Northern Regional capital to protest against Ghana’s Electoral Commission.
Led by eight political parties in the country, the demonstrators expressed disappointment over a decision by the country’s election management body to compile a new register ahead of the 2020 elections.
The demonstrators made up of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), Convention People’s Party (CPP), People’s National Convention (PNC), Eagle Party, All Progressives Party (APC), Great Consolidated Population Party (GCPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Dubbed, “Tikusayi demo”, the protesters marched through the streets of Tamale with placards with various inscriptions such as ‘Nana Bring Back Ndoum not register’, ‘Jean Mensa your days are numbered’, ‘Mr President why GHS443 million’ to indicate their opposition to the EC’s decision.
Leaders of the main opposition NDC have stated that the decision to compile a new register is ill-timed and will be a wasteful expedition.
A Deputy General Secretary of the NDC, Peter Boamah Otokunor at a press conference on Friday called on the public to join them in the protest to express their outrage over the moves by the EC.
The General Secretary of the NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah told reporters, they will go all lengths to ensure that the EC does not go ahead with the move.
“We will never agree for our democracy to be toyed with. This is the beginning of the long drawn battle to protect the democracy. We are calling on everybody to get up because peace is something that you need to struggle for and this is the beginning of the struggle for peace in this country. From here, we will be moving to Kumasi, we will move to Accra and we will move to the presidency. Whatever it takes to pump a little bit of sense into the head of Jean Mensa and her cabal, we will do it,” he said.
The demonstration lasted for three hours amidst tight security.
Ghana’s Parliament has however approved about GHS390 million for the Electoral Commission to compile the new voters’ register.
The election management body believes a new register will be more credible and efficient than the existing one and has insisted that it also needs to replace its outmoded biometric machines for new ones that will accommodate a facial-recognition technology.
The Director of Elections at the EC, Dr. Serebour Quaicoe justified the plans saying there was a need to tackle verification challenges that occur on Election Day.
By Jonathan Ofori, Daily Mail GH