Director of Elections for the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr. Martin Adjei Mensah Korsah says the party feels vindicated after the Supreme Court ordered the Electoral Commission (EC) to delete the names of persons who registered with National Health Insurance (NHIS) cards during the 2012 registration exercise. According to him the EC should have cleaned the register as far back 2014 after the various opposition parties including the NPP challenged the credibility of the register.
The Supreme Court by a unanimous court ruling ordered the EC to delete the names of all persons who registered with the NHIS cards and provide them an opportunity to re-register.
The ruling also required the EC to delete the names of all dead persons from the electoral roll. Their ruling was based on the admittance by the EC that they have the data of persons who registered with the said cards following a case brought before it by Abu Ramadan, former PNC youth organiser and one other person, Evans Nimako, a farmer who prayed the court to declare the roll as null and void because they believed it was not credible.
Mr. Martin Adjei Mensah Korsah opined that, the EC could have saved themselves from the embarrassment if they had undertaken the cleaning exercise in 2014. He said the EC do not have an excuse in complying with the order. He explained, the implications of this ruling is challenging since it will be difficult to establish the form of identification registered voters used in 2012 during the biometric process.
”We feel vindicated by this ruling. We have been arguing that the register was not credible but we were victimised, insulted and called liars but the Supreme Court vindicated us by their ruling,” he said. But the National Organiser of the governing NDC, Kofi Adams said he feels disappointed at the interpretation given by the opposition NPP. Speaking to Nyankonton Mu Nsem on Rainbow Radio, 87.5FM, Mr. Adams said, the Supreme Court did not order the EC to delete names of persons who registered with NHIS, rather it ask them to clean the register.
The EC has already initiated programs to clean the register hence there is no cause for alarm, He noted. According to him, the NDC is waiting for the certified copy of the ruling by the Supreme Court, therefore they will not feed on the wrong interpretation by the NPP. On their part, the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) says the ruling is bogus whichever way one looks at it.
The National Youth Coordinator for the awake party said the ruling is needless, and waste of time. He described the governing NDC, the opposition NPP and the proponents who are calling for a new register as insincere, and liars who are only peddling falsehood to gain their selfish interest. Divine Nkrumah said it is only the National Identification System that will help resolve the problem of a bloated register. The country he noted, should have a proper identification which is a continuous process by registering new births so when the persons turn 18, the system will automatically capture them and also delete names of those who die. Divine Nkrumah stressed that the so-called cleaning proposed will not help resolve the bloating of our electoral roll. In his view, the quest for people to register for voter cards is not necessarily to vote in elections but to enable them process public documents or transact banking services-a situation he said is putting undue pressure on the card hence the need to adopt the National Identification System.