Contracted guarantors will be punished-EC warns

The Electoral Commission has warned it will deal ruthlessly with persons contracted as multiple guarantors in the limited voter registration exercise.

Senior Public Relations Officer at the Commission, Sylvia Annor said a guarantor cannot guarantee for more than five persons.

She added that persons who bear false witness and guarantees for a person, are likely to be found out when there is a challenge raised against the prospective voter. Such persons will be prosecuted, she warned.

Her remarks are in reaction to reports of some ‘contractors’ engaging in multiple process of guaranteeing to persons who do not have the requisite Identity cards to register on their own.

By law, a person who wants to be registered in the limited Voter Registration Process which began on August 4, 2014 must carry a national ID, Driver’s License, passport or the previous voters ID.

If a person does not have any of these IDs, he must bring along two guarantors to vouch for him or her.

Political parties have in the past, taken advantage of this rule and have employed people as contractors to guarantee for others, in some cases minors.

Some observers at some of the polling stations report of multiple cases of people guaranteeing for others.

Mensah Abroampah of the Centre for Democratic Development said they saw people gathered at vantage points at some of the polling stations ready to guarantee for others who did not have the requisite IDs.

He said about 20 per cent of people who registered today did not have IDs.

Sylvia Annor said a guarantor must be sure the person he is guaranteeing for is above 18 and is a Ghanaian. Otherwise if a challenge is raised against the person and it turns out that the information given is untrue, the guarantor would be held liable.

“You need to know the person you are guaranteeing for properly” she indicated.

She said the registration process has been good thus far and hopes turnout would increase by the day.

The limited voters registration will allow persons who could not vote during the last registration exercise and those who turned 18 years after 2012 to register to register and vote in the 2016 elections.

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