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17.12.2010 Politics

KAS advocates for election fund

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December 17, 2010 Techiman, Dec 16, GNA - The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) is advocating for an elections fund to service budgetary needs as well as promote the independence of the Electoral Commission in carrying out its electoral mandate.

The Senior Programme Manager of KAS, Mr. Isaac Owusu-Mensah, said the funds, would enable the Electoral Commission to plan and execute their programmes without any fear of government inability to provide funds.

He said this at a two-day workshop for candidates of District Assembly elections from the Techiman Municipality and Nkoranza South and North District assemblis held in Techiman.

It was organized by Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) and sponsored by the KAS.

Mr Owusu-Mensah suggested a levy of between 01 and 05 per cent on indirect consumable items imported into the country such as cars, mining and communication equipments and one pesewa more of communication tax.

He said the EC had over the years had their budget cut or delayed by the central government as a result of lack of fundsand noted that elections the world over had become expensive.

Also, innovative mechanisms have been developed to ensure that elections are transparent and credible.

Me Owusu-Mensah said Ghana's general elections over the years had received support from the international donor community but these supports are drying up as a result of gains made in the consolidation of democracy in the country.

"However, with the establishment of the elections fund, the Commission will be capable of adopting more innovative technological means of ensuring that elections become credible, he said.

"One of such means is the adoption of the biometric voters' register and electronic voting. This will also reduce the budgetary and financial pressure placed on the government."

Mr. Twumasi Ampofo, MP for Nkoranza South who spoke on Strategies of Wining Eections at the District level, reminded participants that candidates must work with all parties and individuals in the electoral area irrespective of their political affiliation and interest

He said development of their electoral area should be their primary objective for seeking the mandate of the people and asked the candidate to consider themselves as people seeking power to serve their communities.

Ms. Gloria Ofori-Boadu, a Gender Activists, candidates will be in vain, if they failed to plan for the election, adding that planning for the election day entailed appointment of credible agents who understand electoral accounting, preparation of food for polling agents as well as getting the voters out to vote.


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