IMANI Africa President, Franklin Cudjoe says the Electoral Commission (EC) announcement of plans to compile a new voters register for the 2020 general elections was reckless.
Speaking on The Big Issue, Mr. Cudjoe said the move towards a new register is being rushed given the malcontent from a major stakeholder like the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
He also criticised the manner in which the EC made the announcement, which came in a press release.
“Presumably, for a big announcement like this, all parties should be on board. It looks as if this is quite a reckless means of communicating a major decision that had not been thought through properly by all parties.”
Beyond this, Mr. Cudjoe felt the EC’s direction was at odds with its resolve to cut down costs.
The Chairperson of Commission, Jean Mensa, was in January complaining about the high cost of conducting elections in Ghana.
“In 2016, the cost of elections in Ghana was 12 dollars per voter compared to 9 dollars in Nigeria and 5 dollars per voter in Tanzania in 2015. How can election monitoring bodies streamline their processes to reduce cost,” she said at the time.
In view of this, Mr. Cudjoe questioned how “you arrive at a decision like this without taking into consideration the normal cost of how proper registers are done is confounding.”
“I’m worried that the same issue of the costing element which is the most important matter in all of this apparently is not being adhered to,” he added.
The EC’s decision for a new register came after an Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting on Wednesday.
The EC said it arrived at the decision in consultation with political parties.
It has said the new register will include enhancing features, making it worthy of Ghana’s democracy.
Reacting to the EC’s announcement, the NDC demanding the withdrawal of the communique issued by the EC insisting that no consensus was reached.
According to the party, never was such a decision taken during the Wednesday IPAC meeting.
“In fact, the compilation of a new voters’ register was only mentioned in passing by the EC during a discussion on limited registration. There certainly was no “extensive deliberations “ on this particular matter,” the party said in a statement.