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January 2, 2009 | Political

Electoral college is a must for Ghana

Most of us appreciate how rough the teenage years can be. In the case of our teenage democracy, an electoral college is the ideal environment required to iron out the regional polarisations that create unnecessary tension and close elections. It is, therefore, in my opinion, no more a matter of choice, as to whether we need to adopt the system the Americans use since we have already adopted the larger part of it.
An electoral college will make it redundant for parties to rig the figures of their so called "world bank", thereby removing that source of mistrust. Another advantage will be the ease, with which we can handle the smaller numbers that an electoral college deals with. A win at Manhyia of the Ashanti Region for example will give the NPP let's assume 4 electoral votes and it would not matter, by what margin they carried that constituency. The same will apply for the NDC in say Ho of the Volta Region.
Our electoral system actually works in such a way that the electoral commission gets its results indirectly from reporting officers. This creates a loop hole for politicians to be able to rig the returns, like the case was this year. An electoral vote however is a fixed quantity that cannot be rigged. It is solely dependent on who wins which constituency. It will therefore be impossible for a ruling party or any other party to manipulate the system in ways that are known to us now.
I suggest that Ghanaians approach their MPs with the idea, the MPs on their part should consider the fragile state of our democracy and institute laws to adopt the electoral college system. I also suggest that the electoral college be crafted in such a way as to give every constituency and not a whole region a certain proportion of the electoral votes. This will ensure that the constituencies that support a party which is unpopular in a region get a certain degree of representation.
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