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General News of Wednesday, 1 July 2020

Source: Peace FM

Ghana has never had a completely new register, EC's registration exercise unprecedented - Kwesi Pratt

Seasoned journalist, Kwesi Pratt says EC's compilation of a new voters' register is unprecedented and first of its kind.

The Electoral Commission (EC) commenced its new voters' registration exercise on Tuesday, June 30.

The exercise is aimed at compiling a new voters' register for the upcoming general elections and subsequent elections.

Before the exercise, there were lots of controversies over whether it is relevant for the electoral management body to compile a new register or rather review the old register.

The EC was saddled with lawsuits but a 7-member panel presided by the Chief Justice unanimously ruled that the Commission is an independent body and has not acted in contravention of its mandate as enshrined in the 1992 constitution.

This ruling, therefore, empowered the EC to begin the exercise.

Making his submissions on Tuesday's 'Kokrokoo' on Peace FM, Kwesi Pratt noted that there's never been a time in the history of Ghana where an entirely new voters' register has been compiled.

According to him, previous registers were not newly compiled because the EC accepted the old voter ID card as a source document for registration.

To him, once the old voter ID card is used to register, the voters' register doesn't become a new one but rather a review by the EC.

''Today, the old ID card has been excluded. The old register has no relevance to the compilation of a new register. So, this is a unique exercise. It has never happened before; we're writing an entirely new register'', he said.

But speaking on the same program, the National Organizer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Henry Nana Boakye a.k.a Nana B disagreed with Kwesi Pratt's assertion.

Nana B stressed a new voters' register has been compiled four times in the country.

Kwesi Pratt however replied the NPP National Organizer saying his statement is a distortion of the facts.

"We've never compiled an entirely new register, never . . . In the past, when the register is opened, you could use your old ID card as a source document. So, that process amounts to a review of the register," he insisted.