FEATURED: The Bushy Roads In The City Of Accra: Who Is Sleeping On The Job?...

22.10.2008 Politics

Sunyani Election Task Force interacts with journalists

By gna

The Electoral Commission has assured voters whose identification cards are defaced or lost but have their particulars in the voters' register will be allowed to exercise their franchise on December 7.

Mr. Yaw Badu Amaniampong, Sunyani Municipal returning officer of the Electoral Commission, said this in Sunyani on Wednesday when the Municipal Election Security Taskforce interacted with media practitioners to update them on its activities.

He said majority of eligible voters did not take part in the replacement exercise “but since voting is a civic responsibility there is the need for the Commission to provide the opportunity for such voters to do so in the general election”.

The eight-member taskforce chaired by Superintendent of Police Charles Botwe, Municipal Police Commander, is made up of representatives of the Municipal Assembly, Ghana Immigration Service and Ghana National Fire Service.

Others are the Third Battalion of Infantry, Customs, Excise and Preventive Service, Bureau of National Investigations, Ghana Prisons Service and the Information Services Department.

Mr. Amaniampong said at the close of nominations, 10 parliamentary candidates in both Sunyani East and West constituencies had filed their nominations.

Candidates of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), National Democratic Congress (NDC), People's National Convention (PNC), Democratic Freedom Party (DFP) and Convention People's Party (CPP) filed nominations to contest the Sunyani East seat.

For the Sunyani West seat, candidates of the NPP, NDC, CPP, DFP and DPP filed their nominations.

He said the Commission would not re-open nominations and that aspiring parliamentary candidates who did not meet the time frame could channel their grievances through the law courts for redress.

Mr. Amaniampong said the EC intended to train party agents on the electoral system and would recruit capable election officials to man the 200 polling stations in the municipality.

He appealed to the media to cross-check information on elections at the EC before disseminating to avoid creating any confusion.

Mr. Charles Koomson, Brong-Ahafo Regional Chairman of Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) urged the media to work towards integrating the people and promoting social cohesion.

He appealed to media practitioners to remain neutral and to avoid associations and activities that might compromise their integrity as journalists or damage their reputation.

Mr. Koomson, who is the Regional Manager of Ghana News Agency, advised journalists to remember to use decent language and to avoid controversial or offensive references unless there was clear justification.

Mr. Botwe said the media played a very active role in enhancing the country's democracy and stressed the importance to educate the people on some basic elements of the electoral process.

Mr. Botwe appealed to the media to be guided by principles of fair play and be circumspect in their reportage more especially on issues concerning elections to promote national security before, during and after the December polls.