The Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO) is urging all Ghanaian registered voters to take part in the on-going nationwide Electoral Commission (EC) organized Voters’ Register Exhibition exercise.
The exercise, which started on Tuesday, September 10, 2019 and will end on September 17, 2019, seeks to provide all registered voters (from 2012 to 2019) the opportunity to verify and authenticate their registration details, and to have any issues, such as missing names or incorrect personal details rectified.
Registered voters can therefore check their registration details at their designated polling stations in their constituencies daily from 7 am to 6 pm.
CODEO in a statement said, “the voter register exhibition exercise is an important exercise in the EC’s quest to clean up and ensure a credible Voters’ Register ahead of upcoming elections. CODEO, thus, entreats all Ghanaians to assist the EC by volunteering information about deceased relatives, friends and community members to EC exhibition officials to enable them expunge names of such persons from the Voters’ Register.”
It explained that the need to check and confirm the registration details was important especially due to the two voting exercises expected in the country.
Given that two (2) important national exercises, namely the referendum on future local government elections and the 2019 District Level Elections will take place simultaneously on December 17, 2019, CODEO is entreating Ghanaian voters to participate in the exhibition exercise to enable all to exercise the right to vote on Election Day in December.
The referendum on local government elections will provide Ghanaians a voice in determining whether or not local government elections should be opened to political parties’ participation.
The District Level Elections, on the other hand, will enable Ghanaians to select local government representatives in order to foster responsive and accountable local governance.
CODEO believes that, electoral credibility requires collective efforts and citizens’ participation is key to the attainment of credible electoral outcomes.
CODEO calls on all relevant stakeholders to support a successful exercise.
The media is also urged to help publicize the exhibition exercise to enhance public response and participation.
Challenges with voters’ register exhibition
The exercise, although expected to be ongoing smoothly nationwide, is experiencing some challenges.
In the New Juaben North and South constituencies in the Eastern Region, residents were unable to go check their details when the exercise started on Tuesday.
Registers for the areas were not part of the stocks received from the headquarters of the EC when the materials arrived late Monday night.
In the Tamale Central constituency of the Northern Region, there were a number of challenges that limited the participation of residents in the process but the Acting Northern Regional Director of the Electoral Commission, Lucas Yiryel assured that the problem will be rectified.
“There are some little bits of challenge that we are facing as at now. The most serious part is Tamale Central, all the registered constituencies (about 153) have not yet arrived. So I isolated one or two polling station or exhibition centres to register in some of the districts and we are communicating with Accra on that.”
Meanwhile, persistent rainfall is affecting turn out at some exhibition centres in parts of the Northern Region.
At the Dabokpa Technical Institute polling centre in the Tamale South Constituency, only 97 people out of 663 voters in the register had checked their names as at 11:30am.