No To A New Voters Register

Since Ghana returned to full-blown democracy in 1992, the life span of the voters register has remained a nightmare to Ghanaians.

The Electoral Commission (EC), has hinted of plans to compile a new voters register for the 2020 elections.

This Newspaper is of the opinion that the idea of compiling a new voters register at this point will be one register too many.

Ghanaians, have watch haplessly and disappointingly as the election management body, dance naked over why there is always the need for a new register, whenever they feel like.

We have tinkered with the voters register since we ushered in multi-party democracy, and yet we are still not satisfied with what we have.

From the foregoing, it seems in our view that the voters register, we have compiled were all inspired by political considerations, if not outright shenanigans and which explains why, we always find reasons to re-register eligible voters.

The 1992 Constitution and the Electoral Commission Act 451 of 1993 that established the EC empowered it among others to; compile voters register for the purposes of elections and referenda.

According to the commission, in its latest attempt” It has been a convention that for every eight years, the Commission compiles new voters’ register”.

In 2012, it cost the nation an amount of GH¢148,942,378 for compiling the biometric voter registration.

Fast forwarding to 2019, considering the rise in voter population and adjusting the 2012 cost to inflation and depreciation of the cedi, conservative estimate can put the proposed 2020 register at GHC 350 million Ghana cedis.

We recall that preparatory to the 2016 elections, the opposition New Patriotic Party, pushed so hard for the compiling of a new register, with unsubstantiated allegation that, we have 750,000 foreigners, specifically Togolese on our register, an allegation the party failed to prove.

It is therefore not surprising that, with the party in power, the EC, is in the process of compiling a new register.

Speaking in an interview with Radio Ghana in Kumasi, the Director of Elections at the EC, Serebour Quaicoo, said since the current machines the EC was using was outdated, the producers are no longer producing parts for them.

“The current machines that we are using is outdated, the producers are no more producing it, so getting parts to service them [such as] cartridges, toners is a problem.”

“So the commission has taken a decision, but we are yet to come out publicly but we intend compiling a new register for 2020,” Mr Quaicoo said.

None of the reasons posited above by Mr Quaicoo, justify another jamboree and money-gulping exercise which the country, can ill afford at this moment, where National Health Insurance Authourity owe service providers, where government subvention to Senior High Schools (SHS) is in arrears, where contractors are crying for non-payment of work done over years etc.



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