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25.07.2005 General News

People's Representation Bill will be impracticable - PNC


Accra July 25, GNA - The People's National Convention (PNC) on Monday demanded that the People's Representation (Amendment) Bill be suspended since registering Ghanaians abroad would be highly impracticable.

The PNC further argued that any attempt by the Government to use its parliamentary majority to pass the Bill would amount to abuse of the democratic rights of the electorate.

A statement signed by Mr Bernard Mornah on behalf of the Party's General Secretary, called on the proponents of the Bill to think about Ghana first and spare Ghanaians the consequences of its passage. "The PNC disagrees with those, who argue that the passage of the Bill is one thing and the implementation modalities are left for the Electoral Commission. The PNC holds the view that laws are passed having the end in mind."

It said as it stood now, 40 per cent to 60 per cent of the Budget for elections was donor sponsored, and asked how the country could expand the scope at a time it was not able to sponsor even the current arrangement.

The statement said the argument that Ghanaian missions abroad would conduct elections did not consider the issue of a level playing field. It said if a voter should be challenged on his nationality, which court would settle the case?

"We are not opposed to Article 42 of the Constitution, neither are we opposed to Ghanaians resident outside Ghana to register and vote. Just as Article 42 is important, there are several other articles in the Constitution like Article 25 that talks about education, which to the PNC, is even more crucial since an educated or literate society would enable the blossoming of our fledging democracy," the statement said. 25 July 05