EC scores itself 9 out of 10 in voters registration exercise
The Greater Accra Electoral Commission says the success rate of the just ended voter registration exercise was near perfect.
Greater Accra regional EC Director, Kwame Amoah, explained that while it had projected to register about 155,000, it managed to register more than 162,000 within the 11-day exercise which ended Sunday.
“The exercise has been very successful…in the Greater Accra I think we never had any kind of skirmishes,” he observed.
On a scale of 0 to 10, a satisfied officer rated the performance at nine.
He said despite reports of low publicity, the queues picked up as the exercise went on. There was a generally high level of cooperation with EC officials in charge of the registration centers.
His assessment comes amidst fears that several thousands may have been disenfranchised in the exercise that allowed newly eligible voters to register for the first time.
The media spotlight fell on areas like the University of Ghana campus where there was a tirade of complaints about the slow registration process.
The university holds a projected 8,000 students who qualify as first-time voters but had only one registration centre. The EC responded by providing two more centers for the University of Ghana and additional centers at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi.
But the Director revealed that at the close of the exercise on Sunday 6pm, only 25 students were left standing in the queue at Legon Hall.
At another hall of residence, Jubilee, there were only 17 students unattended to. In Pentagon Hall there were five, the Greater Accra regional Director Kwame Amoah said.
“We had programmed the system such that after 6pm no registration could be done. This is a security feature” he said.
The National Headquarters of the EC has been informed of the number who were unable to register, Kwame Amoah observed.
“They will take a decision as to how to handle the issue” he assured. The Regional Director explained that the EC would not be happy to learn that these students were unable to register.
Although he backed an extension of the exercise in some areas, Mr. Amoah said the final decision is left to the Electoral Commission.
Making his party’s own observations, the National Organiser of the governing NDC Kofi Adams said the exercise was successful.
At least 1.1 million people were registered according to the party’s provisional figures.
He said it is not realistic to register everyone who is eligible to vote. Some Ghanaians would have been hospitalized, others would have travelled and students may be too engrossed in writing exams.
Others may just not be interested in registering, he explained.
Making his preliminary observations, the ag. General Secretary of the opposition NPP John Boadu said, the Limited Voter Registration Exercise was to “a large extent” successful.
“It is important that we acknowledge that” he said, but pointed out that the EC could have served students on Legon campus and at KNUST much better.
But the NPP is internally collating its figures to enable it come to a conclusion of the entire exercise.