General News of Friday, 23 September 2016
The Electoral Commission (EC) says it would provide tactile ballot jackets at all designated polling stations to help persons with visual impairment to vote independently.
This would ensure secrecy of their ballot and guarantee their preferred choice of candidates during the polls.
Mrs. Abigail Nutakor, the Head of Gender and Disability of the Commission, revealed this at the Ghana for Peace Summit held in Accra on theme: “The Disability Community and the Need for Peace.”
The Commission is also working that inaccessible polling stations are located at level grounds for easy access to all voters.
She has therefore urged Persons with Disability (PWDs) not to hesitate to approach the Commission with the lists of known inaccessible polling stations for redress.
The summit organised by Here for Perfection (H4P), a non-governmental organisation, committed to promoting the interest of persons with disability in Ghana.
Mrs. Nutakor said the EC has also redesigned the voting booth by reducing the height to enable wheel chair users to easily cast their ballots.
“The EC will ensure the facilitation of accreditation for PWD’s who are often part of the domestic observers groups,” she added.
Mrs. Nutakor said: “A PWD who may not be able to appear at the polling station to cast a ballot has the opportunity to appoint a proxy to vote on his or her behalf. District Electoral Officers will facilitate the process for all PWDs.”
The Head of Gender and Disability hinted that the Commission, donors and other stakeholders would be organising sensitisation programmes to inform PWDs and to also enable them secure the needed responses on issues concerning elections.
She appealed to PWD’s, who are knowledgeable about the electoral process, to educate their colleagues so that they do not become handicapped.