Franklin Cudjoe Ask EC For Timetable For Voters’ Registration Exercise
President of IMANI Africa, Franklin Cudjoe, is demanding from the Electoral Commission (EC), a timetable outlining all important details about the upcoming voters’ registration exercise which is scheduled to begin in June this year.
The EC is bent on compiling a new register over claims that the existing one is not credible enough for the 2020 polls.
Director of Elections at the EC, Dr. Serebour Quaicoe had earlier insisted that the current register should be replaced to make it more capable of tackling the verification challenges that occur on election day, given experiences from past elections.
Even though there has been a lot of arguments concerning the exercise, including uncertainty due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, the Commission, after an Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting last week settled on beginning the exercise while observing the COVID-19 safety protocols.
But speaking on Citi TV‘s current affairs program, The Big Issue, Mr. Cudjoe expressed disappointment in the EC’s plans towards compiling the new electoral roll.
He further asked that the Commission to immediately release a timetable for the exercise and the general elections in December to prove its seriousness.
“They [the EC] seem to be on a different planet because they think they are not covered by any COVID-19 protocol. So, for them, they are just on their own doing their own things the way they want to do it. But they’re not even giving any proper timetable except mentioning months. The last elections, we had a timetable from the EC even though there were agitations before it started,” he noted.
“Now, this particular timetable we need must include the registration itself, its challenges, the deduplication or multiples because it’s supposed to be done, the exhibition, objections, distribution of the registers to political parties, distribution of the list of polling stations, schedule for diasporan registration as they themselves have promised, the results cumulation and declaration. Any timetable that does not reflect this is a mere figment of anybody’s imagination,” he added. Similar view
In a similar view as Franklin Cudjoe, the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia has expressed worry over what he believes is the EC’s condescending posturing over the compilation of the new voters' register.
His condemnation is amidst the longstanding tussle between the two main political parties on the matter.
On Wednesday's edition of The Point of View on Citi TV, Mr. Nketia said the role of even the IPAC is no longer useful to the country's electoral processes because of its disregard by the Commission.
He added that the behaviours and decisions by the leadership of the electoral body are red flags the country must be concerned about ahead of the 2020 general elections.
Elections 2020 and COVID-19
Due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, plans towards the general elections were put on hold. These included the registration of citizens for the national identification card and the compilation of the biometric voters' register.
But the IPAC meeting which took place on Wednesday, May 27 had the Electoral Commission and political parties present deciding on starting the compilation of the new voters' register in June 2020.
Although the exercise has not yet begun, the EC says it will observe the necessary safety protocols if the time comes for the registration exercise to commence.
But even after this development with the exercise, Mr. Asiedu Nketia says the NDC will still challenge the Commission's decision to compile a new voters' register.