General News of Sunday, 9 December 2012

Source: Daily Graphic

Election Winner to be known today

Electoral Commission Chairman Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan has announced that the Commission will declare the results of Friday’s election within 72 hours after the close of poll.

“We normally give ourselves 72 hours to deal completely with what has to be done but in 48 hours, we should know who is winning”, he said.

Dr. Afari-Gyan was speaking Wednesday at a news conference in Accra where he highlighted the EC’s preparedness for Friday’s polls.

With just a couple of days to go, he said, “we will not be limited by any timeline to announce the Presidential results, but will work within reasonable time to announce the results.”

He reported that all materials relevant to the elections have already been distributed in the field, “so we are ready to conduct the elections.”

“From the exercise we did on Tuesday on the early voting, we can say we have robust machines for the job.”

The EC chairman said that verification machines processed large numbers of voters during the early voting exercises, “so in our largest polling stations, which has 1,100, even there people can be processed for voting.”

Touching on the security officials who were unable to vote early because their names were missing from the register, Dr. Afari-Gyan said the problem was not with the commission but with the security agencies that failed to submit the particulars of their ID cards or provided wrong information as the list of early voters was being compiled.

“In the voters register, we do not distinguish between professionals so if we are doing an exercise like this, we rely on information from the various security agencies who compiled the list for us.”

“Based on the information provided for us, we compiled a list of 29,914 members of the security services.

“We asked for ID cards and polling station numbers and if they did not provide us with them, we cannot allow them to vote. There were some cases in which the ID numbers were not correct”, Dr. Afari-Gyan explained.

The EC chairman said that his organization has held a meeting with the security agencies and they have agreed that those who were unable to vote should go to their polling stations on Friday to vote.

He said that such persons, together with media personnel who have accreditation, will be allowed to the front of the queues at their polling stations so that they can vote quickly and get back to their official Election Day duties.