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General News of Thursday, 6 December 2012

Source: Daily Graphic

I will not vote - Dr Afari-Gyan

The Chairman of the Electoral Commission, Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan says, he will not vote in Friday’s election.

He explained he cannot vote because all the contesting presidential candidates are his brothers.

“I will not vote as a matter of principle. The referee does not have to vote for one team. Casting a vote for any of the contestants would be tantamount to being on one particular side therefore as a matter of principle, I don’t vote”.

Dr Afari Gyan who was speaking at a news conference in Accra to highlight the preparedness of the EC for Friday’s polls said he has never voted in any election as the Chairman of the Commission even though he was a registered voter.

“But in my private life, I would vote”, he said.

Dr Afari-Gyan made this known in response to a question on whether he made any formal choice during elections at the news conference which was organised by the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA).

He said even though the EC would be making use of new technology such as the verification kits, the commission would still be relying on fax machines to receive results at the headquarters.

“This is because we would need to see signatures endorsing the results”.

Dr Afari-Gyan explained that this time around when the results arrive at the headquarters, the EC would quickly make copies available to political party representatives so as to speed up the process.

He said there were a total of 14.07million registered voters

The EC Chairman denied that the Commission had said minors could vote explaining that what the EC had said was that between the time the anomaly was identified and polling day, those minors could not be legally prevented from voting.

The EC Chairman said the register has been legally certified by a court of the law and that from now only persuasions and appeals could be used.

“If you see a small kid in the queue, be patient for him or her to pass. It does not mean they cannot be punished,” he added.

“They passed infront of us and we did not challenge them during the registration and during the display of the register”.

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