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General News of Saturday, 15 November 2008

Source: GNA

Proxy voters need to apply to the Electoral Commission

Ho, Nov. 15, GNA-Those who intend to vote by proxy on December 7, would have to apply in person to their Returning Officers, stating their reasons for wanting to vote that way. Mr Dogbey Selormey, deputy Volta Regional Electoral Officer spelt out this condition at a Regional Youth Dialogue in Ho on Friday organized by the National Youth Council (NYC).

He was speaking on "Youth participation in governance". Mr Selormey said the applications should bear the relevant pieces of information about such applicants. A copy each of the application should be given to the proxy and the District Office of the Electoral Commission. Mr Selormey said the proxy would have to take along his or her copy to the Polling Centre to introduce and identify himself or herself to the Presiding Officer and candidates' agents to be able to vote as such. He explained that those safeguards were necessary to assure interested parties that those who were voting as proxies were not doing multiple voting.

Mr Selormey explained that voting separately for a presidential candidate and separately for a parliamentary candidate did not constitute multiple voting. He explained that it would be an offence for any voter to do anything at the polling station that suggests the candidate he or she has voted for.

On pasting of posters, Mr Selormey said candidates should first seek the consent of landlords before pasting their posters on their walls. He said where the pasting was done without the consent of the landlord, that, landlord should report to the Police because it would be an offence to remove such posters arbitrarily.

Mr. Selormey advised the youth to refuse to be manipulated by any politician of political party to engage in electoral offences. He said in such situation the offenders would learn rather too late that they alone would bear the consequences of their actions. Mr. Ransford Ocloo, Volta Regional Co-ordinator of the NYC advised the youths to approach the December elections with much decorum and avoid violence "so that our dear country continues to remain in peace not in pieces".

He appealed to those political activists and politicians who are tagging the elections a "as a do-and-die affair or champion of champions", to desist from such utterances in order not to inflame passions. 15 Nov. 2008.

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