Voters register exhibition begins September 18, exercise lasts 8 days

BY: Timothy Ngnenbe
Dr Serebour Quaicoe
Dr Serebour Quaicoe

The Electoral Commission (EC) has called on all Ghanaians who registered in the biometric voters registration exercise to participate actively in the voters exhibition exercise scheduled for September 18 to 25, this year.

It said the exhibition was the final opportunity for registered voters to authenticate their personal information, as well as confirm if their names were on the register.

Again, the exercise would help the EC rid the register of unqualified persons ahead of the December 7 polls, it said.

The Director of Electoral Services at the EC, Dr Serebour Quaicoe, who made the call, stressed that Ghanaians must see the exhibition as an important exercise because it would help all voters know where they would vote "because it is where you check your name that you will vote on December 7".

Dr Quaicoe made the call at the national delegates conference and acclamation of the flag bearer of the National Democratic Party (NDP) in Accra last Saturday.

He stressed that it was not enough to register to vote, but that the onus lay on all registered voters to ensure that their data were properly captured in the register.

Voters register clean-up

The EC provisionally registered 16,963,306 people at the end of the biometric voters registration exercise which ended on August 9, this year, exceeding its 15 million target.

At the end of the exercise, the eligibility of 37,762 applicants had been challenged for various reasons, including being foreigners or minors.

As part of processes to clean up the register, the EC carried out a de-duplication exercise and also constituted the Election Adjudication and the Vetting committees to help expunge the names of ineligible applicants.

A 16-member multi-stakeholder Vetting Committee, which was inaugurated by the Chairperson of the EC, Mrs Jean Mensa, on Wednesday, August 5, this year, was to manually determine the eligibility of persons who had been flagged for multiple registration through the de-duplication process to be on the voters roll.

The committee was constituted in compliance with Regulation 27 of the Public Elections (Registration of Voters) Regions, 2016, which states that "the commission shall certify the register after determination of claims of objection".

Dr Quaicoe said the committees had completed their work, paving the way for the provisional voters register to be exhibited.

Last chance

In an interview with the Daily Graphic, Dr Quaicoe stressed that the exhibition exercise was the last stage of processes to clean-up the register and must be taken seriously.

He explained that the exhibition would be an opportunity for registered voters to amend their data or records.

"Maybe your name was wrongly spelt or your age or sex was wrongly captured; so the exhibition will give you a lifeline to effect those corrections," he said.

Additionally, he said, registered voters could also apply for the inclusion of data during the exhibition.

"It could be that you have a voter ID card alright, but for some reasons your name didn't appear in the register. Once you go to the exhibition centre with the card, you can apply for your name to be included," he added.

Dr Quaicoe added that the voters register exhibition would also allow Ghanaians to object to names that they believed were not qualified to be on the voters roll.

He said if any Ghanaian had proof that the owner of a name on the register was a foreigner, a minor or had passed on after registration, he or she could object to that name being on the register.