Politics of Tuesday, 5 March 2013
Deputy Eastern Regional Commander of Police, James Abass Abaa, has suggested to the Electoral Commission (EC) to air lift election materials from Accra to the regions and districts in future elections.
He explained that such practices would prevent news of accidents involving vehicles carrying election materials and its security implications for future elections.
Mr Abaa was speaking at a review meeting on the 2012 elections organised by the Department For International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom in collaboration with the KAB Governance Consult and the Electoral Commission at Koforidua on Monday.
The participants in the meeting included representatives of political parties, independent candidates, the police service and some selected media personnel.
Mr Abaa called on the EC to consider Afram Plains and other areas where polling officials would have to cross rivers and waterways as special cases and look for special logistics to enhance the safety transportation of electoral officials and materials to those areas and back.
He explained that, some security personnel feel reluctant to go and work on the Islands of the Afram Plains on Election Day because often they were not provided with communication gargets to enable them communicate to the nearest Police personnel in times of difficulties in the course of their work.
Mr Safo Kantanka, Deputy Electoral Commissioner in-charge of operations, said the meeting was aimed at reviewing the effect of the various activities supported by the DFID under the ‘Enhancing the Credibility of the 2012 Elections’ Project on the Elections.
He said the EC also had plans for internal review of the 2012 elections to help improve upon the performance of the EC in future elections.
He said voter education was the collective responsibility of all the stakeholders in the elections and not the EC alone.
Speaking on the challenges faced by the EC in the running of the elections in the Eastern Region, the Regional EC Director, Mr Paul Boateng observed that, some of the polling agents brought for training by the political parties were people that could not be trained.
He said for fear of being influenced, the major political parties refused to provide their real polling agents for training and on the Election Day, sent persons who were not among those that they provided for the training to observe the elections.
Mr Boateng said because of the poor level of information held by the untrained polling agents, some raised issues that were not necessary and created problems at the polling stations on the Election Day.
He suggested that in future, the EC should insist that only trained polling agents should be allowed to observe the elections on behalf of their parties or candidates on the Election Day.