Jean Mensa — EC Chairperson
Jean Mensa — EC Chairperson
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EC opens registration for special voting

The Electoral Commission (EC) yesterday opened applications for special voting for qualified institutions and individuals, which has been fixed for Monday, December 2, 2024.

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It will close the applications for qualified persons who have a just cause to be granted special voting rights to apply on July 1. The special voting will not be conferred automatically, requiring qualified persons to apply for it.

It would take place in all 276 constituencies across the country, with each voter expected to cast their vote in their constituency as contained in the details of an individual’s Voter ID card.

Special voting

The special voting exercise is guaranteed under Regulation 3(1) of Constitutional Instrument (CI) 127, which states that the voter may apply to the returning officer of the constituency in which the voter is registered so that the voter can be entered as a special voter if as a result of election duties that voter would not be able to be present on the day of the election at the polling station where the voter registered.

The category of voters granted such status comprises staff of the military, police, Immigration Service, Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority, Prisons Service, the Fire Service, polling officers and permanent staff of the EC and the media.

Double-voting

Applicants for special voting rights should be registered voters in the specific constituencies where they desire to cast their votes. Those who would be granted special voting rights would have their names removed from the regular voting list for the December 7 polls.

“The intention is to prevent double-voting,” the EC Chairperson, Jean Mensa, said, emphasising that the commission had put in place stringent measures to prevent the public from undermining the special voting process.

Mrs Mensa said the district police headquarters were designated as special voting centres in each constituency. She said where the number of voters allocated to a special voting centre exceeded the 750 threshold set by the EC, “another voting centre is designated as a special voting centre to facilitate the voting process within the same centre”.

She said to ensure a seamless application and voting process for all applicants of Special Voting, all applicants should apply directly to the Returning Officer of the constituency where the applicant was a registered voter.

Application process

Mrs Mensa said persons applying for special voting were required to bring along a letter from their institutions indicating that they were staff of the said institution. “Members from institutions who desire to apply as a group may submit a list of their officers to the Returning Officer to serve as a register to facilitate the process.

The list must contain the names of each applicant, the Voter ID number and the Polling Station Code as it appears on the Voter ID Card. These particulars will enable the Returning Officer to verify if the applicant is a registered voter in the constituency.

“Note that all applicants must apply in person to the Returning Officer,” the EC Chairperson emphasised. Also, she advised applicants who have misplaced their Voter ID cards to replace them during the exercise to replace lost ID cards to enable them to state the correct particulars for their applications.

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