EC warns against illegal ‘guarantor contract’ business in voters’ registration

Jean Menssa, Chairperson of the Electoral Commission

The Electoral Commission (EC) has cautioned against the latest practice of some people becoming ‘Guarantor Contractors’ at some registration centres in the ongoing voters’ registration exercise.

A statement from the EC noted that such practice is illegal, in pursuant of the Constitutional Instrument (CI) 91, warning that the Commission will not hesitate to make the culprits face the full wrath of the law.

“People who commit such an offence are liable, on summary conviction, to a fine of not more than five hundred penalty units or to a term of imprisonment of not more than two years or both,” the statement indicated.

Per the CI 91, “it is an offence to make an entry of statement which that person knows to be false or does not believe to be true for the purpose of registering a voter.”

It further explained that a registered voter who is the applicant’s parent, sibling, spouse, guardian and other are the only persons who can serve as a guarantor.

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It specified that an applicant must be well known to the guarantor, and that anything contrary to that constitutes an electoral offence punishable by law.

The guarantor clause

Under the Guarantor window, the individual vouching is required to swear an oath affirming that he or she knows the applicant is qualified to register as a voter at that registration centre.

So far, the Electoral Commission has registered over four million applicants at the close of the second phase of the ongoing registration exercise.

The EC said the total applicants registered constitutes almost 30 per cent of the projected figure of 15 million and that the Commission, in the next few weeks, is anticipating to register about 10.5 million people.

It is targeting 15 million applicants by the end of the exercise.

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Ketu South

Meanwhile, Kofi Sakyi Boampong, the Ketu South Municipal Officer of the EC, says the Commission has increased registration centres in the municipality to 51 in phase three of the registration exercise.

This has been possible because it had taken delivery of additional Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) kits to improve its service to the public.

He said the first and second phases had 26 and 25 registration centres, and promised the Commission would not undertake any adventure to disenfranchise any qualified registrant.

“Ketu South has a full complement of the biometric registration kits. We have kits at all the 51 centres under this phase of the exercise and one mobile team, which goes round to help at centres with too many people in addition to two official teams. Again, we have four extra registration kits for backup,” he stated.


Speaking in a media interview, he allayed the fears of the people of any deliberate machinations by the Commission to disenfranchise people in the constituency, saying, “No eligible applicant in the municipality would be denied the opportunity to register in the ongoing voter registration exercise.”

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“EC has 40 days to compile the register, a duration long enough to register everyone onto the electoral roll. There is no need for applicants to rush for queues with its attendant issues to get their cards,” he said.

The EC official said at the close of registration on Tuesday, a total of 51,098 applicants had been issued with their new voter cards, and hoped the process would continue smoothly.

Mr Boampong said just as the Commission assured in its public statement to make up for the lost time occasioned by a technical hitch on Sunday, all the 15 centres that got affected in the municipality would be catered for.


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