The Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) has urged political parties and groups unhappy with the Electoral Commission’s decision to compile a new voter’s register for the 2020 Presidential and Parliamentary elections to use laid down constitutional processes to have their issues resolved.
Speaking in a video posted by CDD-Ghana on Friday, May 15, 2020, its Director of Advocacy and Policy Engagement, Dr. Kojo Asante, urged persons who disagree with the EC to resort to the court.
“The more substantive matter has to do with the compilation of the new voters’ register. This ongoing issue with the Electoral Commission we’ve all had our say for months but the EC has still insisted that it wants to go ahead and compile the register in spite of concerns that have been raised. If there are issues that we have with it, there are options that we have which include going to court particularly if these actions are unlawful and I know already that the NDC has already gone to court about the lawfulness of the EC refusing to use voter ID cards for people to identify themselves during the registration. So there is already a process in place and people should respect the courts to give a ruling so that we all move forward,” Dr. Asante said.
He further urged Ghanaians to desist from resorting to violence as a way of expressing their concerns with the EC’s decision.
“There is no benefit in this current contest to anybody to want to go and fight or do anything outside of the laid down procedures in order for us to be able to give a mandate to whoever Ghanaians will choose as their president come January. It is completely unnecessary. Of course, lawful processes will delay an already encumbered registration process and some of us already have done our analysis that shows we are really risking this process because of all the delays that have happened if we want to still compile a new voter’s register. So the lawful processes will obviously delay but that is a much better option,” Dr. Asante said.
The Electoral Commission’s decision to compile a new voter’s register has been met with mixed reactions from the political front.
Whereas the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and some opposition parties and civil society organisations are against the decision, the NPP and twelve other political parties have backed the move.
Regardless of the resistance, the EC was bent on compiling the new register but subsequently put the exercise on hold following the outbreak of the Coronavirus.
The Electoral Commission has presented to Parliament a Constitutional Instrument to amend C.I 91 to make Ghana card and passports the only form of identification before one could be captured onto the yet to be compiled new voter’s register.
The NDC on Thursday, May 14, 2020, held a press conference where it accused the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) of conniving with Electoral Commission and the National Identification Authority (NIA) to rig the 2020 elections.
Right after the NDC’s allegations, the NPPalso held a press conference to rejected the claims.
The NIA and EC have also in different press statements rubbished the allegations by the NDC.