General News of Saturday, 2 January 2016
Former head of the Political Science Department of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) has described as ‘irresponsible’ the stance taking by the Electoral Commission on the call for new voters register.
According to Dr. Amoako Baah, the EC has no right to make decisions when it has failed to consult stakeholders on the need to clean the voter register.
“EC has no right to state its stand when it has not even finished talking to stakeholders who matter a lot as far as our voter register is concerned. They (EC) should have consulted stakeholders before taking such decisions.
“If EC is serious and being truthful, then they should take a careful look at people’s views because I think what they are doing rather lacks credibility” he noted.
Dr. Amoako Baah was speaking on Nhyira News Friday in connection with EC’s decision that it won’t change the voters register.
The five-member panel reviewing proposals for and against demands for a new voters register says arguments for a new register are unconvincing.
The EC, a month ago organized a two-day forum for political parties, Civil Society organisations and individuals to collate views on the credibility or otherwise of the register.
The EC decided to hold the forum following the heated national debate over the register after the opposition New Patriotic Party claimed it had evidence suggesting the register had been compromised with as many as 76,000 non-Ghanaian voters on it.
There were a number of demonstrations some of which turned violent.
A panel was therefore constituted to solicit opinions from stakeholders on whether or not to compile a new register.
Weeks after the two-day forum, the panel has submitted its report to the EC.
Chair of the Panel Justice VCRAC Crabbe is recommending that EC should not replace the current voters’ register.
The panel, however, stated that it will still continue to monitor events relating to the register.
But Dr. Amoako Baah, who believes the panel had already made up their minds even before making their intentions known to the public said democracy is not about dictatorship and so the panel as well as the EC has no right to take decisions on its own.
“The positions by various political parties are stronger than that of the EC. I must say that if EC refuses to change the voters register, it will cause chaos in the country and so they need to take a second look at their decision” he indicated.