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14.01.2008 Politics

NCCE wants voting time brought forward by 1hr

By The Statesman
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The National Commission for Civic Education on Friday called on the Electoral Commission to amend the time of voting in general elections in the country from the current period of 7:00 am -5:00pm to 6:00am- 4:00pm.

"We believe that the change of time would create enough room for the counting of ballot papers before sun-set, and avoid the situation where most often counting was done in darkness," Augustina Akusua Akumanyin, NCCE Deputy Chairperson stated at a press conference in Accra.

The conference dubbed; "The Need for a Peaceful Election in Ghana 2008," focused on the role of all stakeholders, including President Kufuor, the media, EC, NCCE, political parties, religious bodies, traditional rulers and the Judiciary.

It was attended by Larry Bimi, NCCE Chairman; Baron Amoafo, Deputy Chairman in charge of Finance and Administration; and Kwame Opoku-Afriyie a member of the Commission, NCCE staff and media personnel.

The NCCE noted that the incidence of threats to peace due to problems created in the counting and collating of election results in the night would be prevented when the time was changed.

The NCCE also urged the EC to work efficiently with all stakeholders and consult on all major decisions concerning the elections.

"The EC must ensure that all temporary staff engaged to assist and perform electoral duties are people of unquestionable character, well versed in the rules and regulations governing the elections," Mrs Akumanyin stated.

The NCCE also tasked Inter-Party Advisory Committee to assist the EC through ideas that go beyond partisan interests of political party representatives on the committee.

"IPAC representatives should always place the interest of the nation first in all their deliberations."

The Commission also tasked traditional authorities to abide by Article 276 (1) of the 1992 Constitution and stay away from active partisan politics.

Mrs Akumanyin said the NCCE would continue to play its constitutional mandated role to ensure that the 1992 Constitution survived.

"The Commission would continue to nurture the culture of political tolerance, in line with its vision and ensure that citizens also exercise their franchise without fear" the NCCE stated.

By Ghana News Agency

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