Dr George Akuffo Dampare — Inspector General of Police, Jean Mensa — EC Chairperson
Dr George Akuffo Dampare — Inspector General of Police, Jean Mensa — EC Chairperson

Voter registration exercise: Police, EC urged to ensure safety of PWDs

Ghana Federation of Disability Organisations (GFD) has called on the Electoral Commission (EC) and the Ghana Police Service to take immediate action to prioritise the safety of persons with disabilities (PwDs) in the ongoing voter registration exercise across the country.


It follows concerns of reported incidents of violence at some voter registration centres in the ongoing registration exercise. The federation noted that, even though the exercise had been generally peaceful across the country, in a few places such as Kukuom in the Ahafo Region, Cape Coast, and Adugyama in the Ashanti Region, where violent cases had been reported, such news had the potential of intimidating many persons with disabilities and further discourage them from participating in the exercise.

“The news as reported by some media outlets, falls short of informing the public about the safety measures to assure persons with disabilities to participate in the process,” it said.

“The GFD wishes to call on the security agencies and the Electoral Commission to prioritise the safety of vulnerable groups, including persons with disabilities at all times during the registration process,” the federation said in a statement signed and issued by its national president, Joseph Atsu Hormadzi.


“Persons with disabilities are deemed to be greatly affected in situations of emergencies and violence. The current atmosphere of violence at registration centres is a crucial factor that can lead to the disenfranchisement of persons with disabilities and other marginalised groups, thereby jeopardising their right to participate in the upcoming 2024 general election,” it said.

The federation said: “Ghana as a state party to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), particularly under Article 29, must guarantee the safety and equal rights of persons with disabilities to access political opportunities devoid of obstacles.”

“It needs to be emphasised that inclusion is not just a fundamental human right, but also essential for the sustainable development of Ghana under the principle of “Leaving No One Behind,” it stressed.


The GFD condemned the reported violence and expressed deep concern about its escalation, adding that persons with disabilities had consistently identified political violence as a major barrier to their participation.

The federation noted that without immediate intervention, persons with disabilities would be excluded from the electoral process, violating their human rights to active participation.

The GFD, therefore, called on all duty-bearers, including political party leaders, to take concrete steps to ensure a safe and secure environment for persons with disabilities at the various registration centres, adding that political manifestos with promises of inclusion are meaningless without concrete action to safeguard the lives of persons with disabilities.

It said the GFD remained committed to advocating for the rights and inclusion of persons with disabilities in all aspects of society and therefore urged all stakeholders to work collaboratively to create an environment where the rights of every citizen, including persons with disabilities, were respected and protected.

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