EC reacts: Allegations regarding removal of NDC supporters from voters register 'unfounded'

BY: Enoch Darfah Frimpong
Mrs Jean Mensa - Chairperson of EC
Mrs Jean Mensa - Chairperson of EC

The Electoral Commission has said that the allegations that it was removing the names of supporters of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) from the voters register ahead of Election 2020 was "unfounded."

In a press statement issued Wednesday evening, [September 23, 2020], the EC said, "Our attention has been drawn to statements in the media by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and its flagbearer to the effect that the Electoral Commission is carrying out an agenda to remove the names of its supporters and sympathisers from the Voters Register."

"This allegation is false," the EC said in the press statement.

The NDC flagbearer, Mr John Dramani Mahama and his running mate, Prof Naana Jane Opoku Agyemang on Tuesday cut short their campaign tours in the Bono and Central regions respectively.

They explained that they were returning to Accra to address issues of challenges with the provisional voters register for Election 2020.

Mr Mahama has scheduled a press address on Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 1pm to speak on what he terms as "widespread anomalies" in the provisional voters register for Election 2020, which the Electoral Commission is currently exhibiting.

His spokesperson, James Agyenim-Boateng has explained that the address will focus on the "integrity challenges of the electoral process and unfolding events that threaten to undermine Ghana's stability and democracy."

Related: Mahama to speak on 'widespread anomalies' in provisional voters register

EC's reaction

But reacting to the allegations, the Electoral Commission said it has, from the beginning of the compilation of the Voters Register, lived up to its motto of "Fairness, Transparency and Accountability."

It explained that at every point, it has provided factual, accurate and evidence based information to its stakeholders on voter statistics per region, district, gender, age among others.

It added that to date every interested Ghanaian has information on the number of persons who registered in the just concluded Voter Registration Exercise based on the information the Commission provided.

"It is a paradox, therefore, to suggest that the same Commission now seeks to remove persons from the Voters Register. Had that been the agenda of the Commission, it would not have given detailed information to Stakeholders throughout the Registration process. We assure the general public that these allegations are unfounded."

The EC explained that the exhibition of the Provisional Voters Register has been provided for in the Law (C.I. 91) and that the Law recognising that a registration process is not full proof, has provided a mechanism called "Exhibition" to allow citizens to verify their details to ensure that they are captured in the register or that their details such as sex, age, name are accurate.

It said the Exhibition also affords voters the opportunity to correct errors detected.

"Additionally, the Law provides for inclusion to allow persons who registered but whose names are not on the register, to file to be included in the register."

According to the Electoral Commission, "this process is not new and has always formed part of our processes."

It said in a nutshell, the exhibition exercise provides an opportunity to stakeholders to unearth problems with the register for the purpose of fixing it.

This, it said was exactly what the EC was doing. "We are fixing the issues unearthed."

"We assure the public that the Commission is working to ensure the margin of error with the Voters Register is negligible. We are confident that at the end of the process, we will bequeath the nation with a register that reflects truth and integrity, a register that is credible and comprises eligible Ghanaians only. May God bless our homeland Ghana and make our nation great and strong. Let Peace Reign," the EC stated.

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