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General News of Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Source: Myjoyonline.com

No one can compromise credibility of Dec 7 polls – EC assures

The Electoral Commission (EC) says considering the mechanisms put in place to safeguard the credibility of Wednesday’s polls, there is no way anyone can compromise with it.

EC boss, Charlotte Osei at a news conference in Accra, Tuesday says the electoral system is “secured, credible, transparent” and will produce leaders who reflect the aspirations of the electorate.

A few hours away, Ghanaians will be heading to the over 29,000 polling stations across the country to elect the next president and 275 members of parliament (MPs).

There are seven presidential candidates in the contest. The election has been tipped to be a fierce contest between the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) and New Patriotic Party (NPP).

Rumours have been rife in the lead up to the elections with some opposition political parties alleging the EC is scheming to rig the election in favour of the NDC.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) and Progressive People’s Party (PPP) have questioned some decisions of the Commission especially with the way it handled the nomination process.

But the EC has maintained its position that the 2016 elections will be one of the best-organised exercises in the history of the country.

Mrs Osei said any voter who is verified will have his details deactivated from the Biometric Verification Device (BVD) to prevent incidents of multiple voting.

She also said there will be manual verification forms which will be used to crosscheck the number of ballot at the end of counting.

"The ballot paper given is validated by a unique stamp. After the issuer has signed the manual verification, it is a requirement that it be held to the scrutiny of everyone gathered," she said.

Mrs Osei said the issue of duplicate names has been eliminated completely. She said there is no way a voter's name will appear twice in a different register.

"Counting will be done in public, and declaration will be done same," she said, adding the Commission has distributed solar lamps to all the polling stations.

"There are standardize mechanism to minimize threats so that agents of political parties see what is going on," she added.

With these measures coupled with EC's collaboration with the security agencies, Mrs Osei is optimistic Wednesday's process will be credible.