Care for Free and Fair Elections Ghana (CARE Ghana) has requested for the Electoral Commission (EC) to furnish it with details of some thirty thousand (30,000) persons whose names have been deleted from the voters register.
The EC, which made the announcement last week, indicated that the persons are said to have engaged in multiple registrations or were challenged and not cleared by the various district review committees.
But CARE Ghana in a press statement copied to Power 97.9 FM said the development is creating fear, panic and anxiety among many innocent eligible voters who are not certain whether they are part of the disqualified persons or not.
Against this backdrop is why the civil society organisation group is asking the Jean Mensa-led EC to as a matter of urgency publish the names of the persons at the centreof the controversy and also explain the term ‘Registration outside stipulated time’ being used in the EC’s communique.
“The difficulty of not publishing these alleged names in advance of the elections day could create inconvenience and as well create chaos at the polling stations if potential voters later discover their disqualification only at the point of voting,” said David Kumi Addo, the Executive Secretary of CARE Ghana, who signed the press statement.
Below is the statement from CARE Ghana
P. O. Box M214
Accra – Ghana
LETTER TO THE EC REQUESTING FOR THE PUBLICATION OF THE FULL LIST AND DETAILED INFORMATION ON THE 30,000 NAMES REMOVED/DISQUALIFIED BY THE EC
We have followed the pronouncement on the 25th October, 2020 on the 30,000 names and or individuals who have been disqualified and prevented from participating in the 7th December, 2020 general elections.
Unfortunately, a full list and detail information did not accompany the pronouncement for the disqualification by the Electoral Commission. This is creating fear, panic and anxiety among many innocent eligible voters who are not certain whether they are part of these disqualified persons or not.
In the statement the EC claimed that, among the 30,000 disqualified, 14,000 were individuals whose disqualification were as a result of registering after the period of registration. This is strange because among the reasons informing the EC’s decision for the need for a new voter’s register was to provide a robust system that cannot be infiltrated or manipulated.
In view of the above, Care for Free and Fair Elections Ghana “CARE” GHANA write to request the following:
1. Full disclosure of the 30, 000 names allegedly expunged from the provisional register.
2. Immediate publication of the full list and detailed information of the said names.
3. Explanation of the meaning of the term ‘Registration outside stipulated time’
4. Explanation of how the 14,000 individuals got registered outside the stipulated time,
5. Full disclosure of persons behind this criminal conduct if indeed it did happened
6. The measures taken by the EC to investigate and prosecute perpetrators of this criminal act.
The difficulty of not publishing these alleged names in advance of the elections day could create inconvenience and as well create chaos at the polling stations if potential voters later discover their disqualification only at the point of voting.
In a related and equally important matter, the EC stated that the register has been increased by some 44,430 following the exhibition exercise; This is because, before the exhibition exercise the Electoral Commission publicly announced that it had registered 16,963,306 applicants.
However, after the exhibition exercise the figure mysteriously changed to 17,007,026. Till date the EC is yet to furnish the public with any explanation as to how that came about. “CARE”GHANA finds this development unfortunate as same has the potential of deepening the perception of bias and the lack of impartiality on the part of the EC by some key political players and a section of the society.
We are by this correspondence also demanding explanation as to the postexhibition increase in the number of names on the register.
To ensure transparency, accountability and integrity of the Commission and the electoral process, Care for Free and Fair Elections Ghana “CARE”GHANA encourages the Electoral Commission to provide answers to the above request so as to help assuage the anxiety and suspicion among some key stakeholders and the general public.
David Kumi Addo
Executive Secretary “CARE” GHANA