Ghana News Agency (Accra) – A total of 7,969,807 prospective voters were able to verify and authenticate their details during the just-ended ten-day voters’ register exhibition, held at the 33,367 centres nationwide.
The figure represents 46.9% of the total number of people whose names were on the provisional register.
Jean Mensa, the chair of the Electoral Commission (EC), who announced this news at the “Let the Citizen Know” media briefing in Accra, said the exercise was successful.
The short messaging service introduced by the EC recorded 698,404 prospective voters verifying and authenticating their data in the register.
Comparing a similar exercise which preceded the last general election, she said the turnout rate for the 2016 exhibition, which lasted for 21 days, was 46.5%, while the recent ten-day exercise recorded a turnout rate of 46.9%.
Challenges to be fixed
As expected, she said, voters and observers raised concerns during the exercise. The essence of the exercise was to allow prospective voters to check their details, including their name, sex, age and picture.
She said the Commission was competent and could fix all the challenges, explaining: “The information technology systems are robust. The issues that came up were as a result of administrative and human errors and they are being corrected.”
Mensa said the electoral processes are as “open as day and transparent as the sun” and could not be said to be flawed.
“The Electoral Commission officials cannot add even a single vote or take a vote to any political party. Stakeholders are carried along throughout the process, so there is no room to rig elections,” she said.
She said the Commission had no intention of disenfranchising any citizen or group of individuals and that the challenges which occurred during the exhibition of the voters’ register were widespread and not limited to one location.
Certified final copy
Mensa said it was important for the stakeholders, especially the political parties, to draw the attention of the EC to issues which might arise, so that the Commission can address them.
She said IT officials for the Commission are working assiduously to correct anomalies in the provisional voters’ register.
Samuel Tettey, the deputy chairman of the EC in charge of operations, said that the certified final copy of the voters’ register will be ready on 11 November, and will be presented to the political parties.
He appealed to people who could not participate in the previous registration exercise to do so today (1 October), as the Commission reopens the exercise.