EC Extends Voter Exhibition

The Electoral Commission (EC) has extended the voters’ exhibition exercise until Sunday, September 27, 2020.

It follows the brouhaha over the allegation that some names are missing from the recently compiled voters’ registration exercise as the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), through its flagbearer, John Dramani Mahama, continues to claim that the supposed missing names are NDC members that the EC is seeking to disenfranchise.

The EC has come out to debunk the NDC flagbearer’s claims and said it is putting things in place to ensure things go according to plan. The EC made the reassurance after holding an emergency Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting in Accra yesterday.

IPAC Meeting

The IPAC meeting appears to have been organized for the parties to clear all concerns following claims by the NDC that there were thousands of names in some polling stations missing from the newly compiled voters’ register.

The matters came to the fore when the EC exhibited the voters’ register for all those who registered to check their names and the NDC, through former President John Mahama, hit the roof top when he claimed that those whose names were missing were all NDC members and appeared to create the impression that the EC did it deliberately to disenfranchise the party’s supporters.

Key Assurance

After the IPAC meeting, which the NDC had boycotted in time past because the EC said it was compiling a new register, an EC source said, “The political parties were assured of the commission’s commitment to rectify all the issues pertaining to the duplicate names found in a few registration centres before the end of the exercise.”

The commission further told the party representatives that it had not deleted the names of registered voters in the register as being speculated and also emphasized the essence of the exhibition exercise (CI 91) as one that affords registered voters to verify their details with the view to making the necessary corrections.


After the meeting, the representative of the NDC, Osei Kwame Griffiths, said the party’s concerns were not addressed, adding “I think it was a meeting that was called perhaps after we had raised certain issues within the public domain that even prior to some of the things that are happening, IPAC was not briefed.”

“So, they quickly had to put this together but it still did not answer the very ‘common-sensical’ questions that we had. So, in my view, the meeting could have achieved much more had they been more receptive to some of the questions that we raised,” he added.

NPP Comment

However, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) expressed satisfaction with the assurance given by the EC that the anomalies would be corrected.

“That is the reason why we have the exhibition of the provisional register to correct any anomalies that might have erupted during the generation of the data,” the Campaign Manager of the party, Peter Mac Manu, said.

NDC Rebuttal

The NDC representative, Mr. Griffiths, came back again and was not happy that the NPP was happy with the assurances given by the EC that things would be alright.

“Have you seen, anything leading to the 2020 elections? The NPP has not criticized anything the EC has done. In fact, personal identification numbers, very basic in database management systems, the field that take personal identification numbers should never allow a duplicate. In this case, there are duplicates (sic),” he said.

Independent presidential candidate Jacob Osei Yeboah said the EC had given all the assurance that the anomalies would be corrected.

“The major concerns at this point in time are those whose names have been interchanged. Some were complaining that photos of others have been given to them which under normal circumstances should not happen except there is some corruption of the software,” adding “but the EC has actually given us the assurance that everything is going to work.”

Mahama Counter Attack

As the EC was holding the IPAC meeting, the NDC flagbearer, ex-President John Mahama, was also firing from the party’s headquarters at Adabraka, Accra, over the supposed missing names on the electoral roll.

He said for example that his running mate Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang was a victim of the EC anomalies and reiterated his claim that the EC is incompetent.

Mr. Mahama, ahead of the news conference, had said that the voters’ exhibition exercise, which began on September 18, had been “chaotic, anarchical and disorderly.”

He said the fact that his running mate’s name was duplicated in the register validated their claim that the EC is not on top of issues.

“This matter is of grave concern and at the heart of the credibility of the upcoming December 7 elections and threatens our democracy,” he pointed out.

He said for instance that Prof. Opoku-Agyemang, upon her visit to her voters’ register exhibition centre in the Central Region, realized that her identification number had been duplicated in the album and the running mate had to “send her card to the district office to go and sort it out. So she had to drive from Komenda to Elmina where the district office of the EC is. At Elmina, they took the old card, destroyed it and replaced it with a new one.”

Open Declaration

He reiterated his open threat that neither himself nor the NDC would accept the results of ‘flawed’ elections in December, saying, “We in the NDC have exhibited restraint at all times in this electoral process.Even now, we are committed to doing so, but let me serve notice once again that we’ll not accept results of a flawed election.”

“We will certainly not look on, neither will we shirk our civic responsibility and allow the EC, whether by ill intent or sheer incompetence, to usurp the people’s mandate in the December 7 polls.

“The EC must take immediate steps to rectify and sanitize the register and re-exhibit it to afford the voting public and all stakeholders, an opportunity to verify their particulars in the voter register before it is finalized,” he said.

The former President stressed, “This moment demands of us to act with patriotic zeal to preserve the zeal and stability of our beloved nation Ghana. The true will of the people must triumph.”

Bigotry Claim

Mr. Mahama said that “the voter registration exercise was characterized by bigotry and exclusion, where many citizens were crudely prevented from registering on the pretext that they were not Ghanaian.

“These acts of intimidation were perpetrated by the state security apparatus, which is now filled with vigilante elements loyal to the ruling NPP, with an impunity reminiscent of events that took place at Ayawaso West Wuogon early last year.

“What was worse and a danger to our democracy was that in spite of the glaring evidence available, the President of the republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, denied knowledge of the occurrence of these events and he actually said that as far as he was aware, eligible persons had an opportunity to register.

“He also failed to take any action to forestall the recurrence of such acts of political thuggery,” he claimed.

“I regret to note that these irregularities, inconsistencies and intimidation are generating anxiety among the Ghanaian public that the upcoming elections may not be free and fair.

“It is deeply troubling that the ongoing exhibition of the voter register has revealed significant omissions and, in some cases, the deletion of names of registered voters on a wide scale.

“As an interested party in the December elections, we want to state strongly that these alarming warning signs do not auger well for free and fair elections,” he added.

By A.R. Gomda