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17.11.2008 Elections

EC Gives Assurance of Credible Elections


Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, Chairman, Electoral Commission

The Electoral Commission (EC) has given the assurance that the results of this year's general election will be declared before the 72-hours mandatory period elapses.

This, according to the EC, means the anxiety that usually builds up after the mandatory 72 hours which has been blamed for some of the tension and rumours of rigging, will not be the case this year.

This is because of the introduction of some modern technologies, including gadgets provided by mobile phone operator, MTN.

The EC said the new technology and gadgets will enable the commission to receive the results from remote communities in record time.

Speaking in Tamale, in the Northern Region, a deputy chairman of the EC, Mr Safo Kantanka, also announced that in all, 1,060 people filed their nominations to contest the 230 parliamentary constituency seats in the country with the Ashanti Region recording the highest number of 159 candidates, while the Upper West Region has the least of 50 aspirants.

The Northern Region has the second highest of 142 candidates, Eastern Region, 139, Greater Accra 122, Brong Ahafo 112, Volta Region 104, Western 90, Central 79 and 63 for the Upper East Region.

The NPP filed 229 constituencies, leaving Ellembelle in the Western Region, while the NDC filed 228 constituencies CPP filed in 202 constituencies, PNC, 126, DFP 108, Independent candidates are 99, DPP 48, RPD 11, NVP 5, GCPP 2 and GNP 1.

'In spite of the high numbers,' he said, 'we do not envisage collation of results in this election to be difficult, we expect it to be better than the 2004 elections.'

He added that his outfit is ready for the conduct of the elections as almost all logistics and materials in connection with the pools are set.

Mr Kantanka was speaking at a workshop towards a peaceful and credible election organised in Tamale by the Institute for Economic Affairs (IEA) for stakeholders including representatives of political parties.

He spoke on the topics, 'The Challenges and prospects of Election 2008 - The EC Perspective' and 'Election 2008: The Role of the Media and Civil Society.'