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Politics of Tuesday, 25 February 2020


‘It makes a lot of sense’ — Akufo-Addo backs calls for new voter roll

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has backed calls by a section of Ghanaians to allow the country’s Electoral Commission to compile a new register.

The decision, according to the President, makes a lot of sense.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo believes it is prudent for the election management body to discard the existing voter register after every eight years as it has been doing in the past.

The decision to compile a new register ahead of the 2020 polls has been fiercely been opposed by a section of Ghanaians especially the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and other interest groups.

The minority in Parliament staged a walkout last week during the President’s state of the nation address last week in protest of the move.

Interacting with the Ghanaian community in Oslo, Norway, President Akufo-Addo however, said the EC should be allowed to do its work.

“We are getting ourselves ready for December 7. The Electoral Commission is going to compile a new register. It appears there is now an eight-year cycle for the EC to compile a register. They did so in 2012 and 2004. So with these last three including this one are all in the eight-year cycle. I think it makes a lot of sense. The national census itself is done on a ten-year basis.”

“So it makes sense that we keep up the EC to admit new people, take out all those who have died, etc. Their intention is to begin in April. We want everybody in Ghana who can vote to register. It’s important that we all exercise our civic duty to go and vote in December and choose the government that we want,” CNR quoted the President as saying.

The new register controversy

The EC has set April 18, 2020, as the date for the compilation of the new voters’ register amid calls to get the exercise suspended.

A Deputy Chairperson of the EC in-charge of Operations, Samuel Tettey said in an interview that the exercise is expected to be completed by May 30, 2020, after which an exhibition exercise will be conducted from August 15-28, 2020.

Already the action has been met with strong opposition by some political parties and other interest groups.

Led by the biggest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), the Inter-party Resistance Against the New Voter Register has held a series of protests in some parts of the country including the national capital, Accra.

An Eminent Advisory Committee (EAC) of the Electoral Commission has been holding talks with stakeholders to bring the matter to a close.

The EAC called on the EC to meet with members of the Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) and deliberate on issues concerning the creation of a new voters’ register.