EC defends decision to use NSS personnel for Nov polls

The Electoral Commission (EC) has defended its decision to recruit National Service Scheme (NSS) personnel for the November polls.

The chairperson of the EC, Charlotte Osei, announced last year the EC would be recruiting teachers and NSS personnel to help with the November polls in response to the queries raised by the Supreme Court during the Election Petition concerning the quality of staff employed for the conduction and monitoring of the 2012 polls.

Speaking on Citi FM’s News analysis programme, The Big Issue, the Director of Public Affairs for the EC Christian Owusu-Parry said the recruitment of NSS personnel forms part of the commission’s plan to employ professional officials for this year’s elections.

He revealed that the EC were contemplating the use of NSS personnel as the election officials and indicated that the NSS personnel will be targeted at areas which are not equipped with the requisite personnel per the Supreme Court’s concerns.

“Not all the personnel are going to be National Service Personnel. We are going to rely on the national service people in some of the areas we think the caliber of officials are not very high as the Supreme Court and public demand of the commission.”

According to Mr Parry, it is only prudent to deploy the NSS personnel because of their high level of education.

“If they want high caliber people to be at the polling stations, there is that huge army of national service personal who have had some high level of education that can be deployed and they would work, I believe, efficiently, at the polling station.”

By Delali Adogla-Bessa/