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General News of Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Source: citifmonline

Togolese on voters register: NPP attacking Volta Region, B.A

The General Secretary of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) has described claims by the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) that the voters register contains names of Togolese and Ivorians as an attack on the people of the Volta and Brong Ahafo regions.

“The claim by the NPP that persons from Togo and Cote D’Ivoire have had their names on the electoral register is not only fraudulent, but also constitute a gratuitous attack on the people of the Volta and Brong Ahafo regions,” he said.

Johnson Asiedu Nketia made the statement at a press conference in response to claims by the NPP that about 76,286 Togolese are on Ghana’s voters register.

The NPP has petitioned the Electoral Commission to compile a new voters register while providing evidence they feel warrant their call.

But speaking at a press conference on Wednesday, the NDC scribe, Johnson Asiedu Nketia watered down the evidence presented by the NPP.

He said, “as far as we [NDC] are concern, this claim is a continuation of the NPPs long-standing affinity to tribal politics through which they associate people from certain ethnic and tribal extractions with wrongdoing and heap unsavory comments on them. This is unfortunate.”

The NPP had argued that their call for a new voters register is also premised on a ruling by the Supreme Court which directed the EC not to use NHIA cards to register eligible voters.

Johnson Asiedu Nketia said, “we beg to difer from this point as well.”

He explained that, “one of the forms of identification for registration under regulation 1 (3) of CI 72 is an existing voter identification card. In order words, if you delete the national health insurance card, the use of an existing voter identification card is still permissible by law.”

“So if you open the register today and then people approach the registration centre to register and they present an existing voter ID card derived from the 2012 registration, how are you going to determine that as for this card, it was procured through the use of NHIA card so I will drive that person away.”

“Everybody on that 2012 register is already in possession of existing ID cards and they are qualified to register; when they approach the registration centres they will be registered. So what are you achieving if your purpose is to open the compilation of a new register and then targeting those whom you claim are on the register who did so by the use of the NHIA card. You will be better of preventing the use of the NHIA card in subsequent limited registration exercises.”

“This is very simple. This is elementary logic. This means that if the registration of a person by means of an NHIA card were to be declared invalid for which reason a new register is to be drawn up for the 2016 election, such a person will be entitled by law to be registered if he produce a 2012 voter ID card which he obtained by use of an invalid NHIA card, the perceived invalidity of his registration will, therefore, not have been cured by the compilation of a new register,” he added.