General News of Wed, 27 Jul 201614
‘Dumsor’ hampered re-registration – Pyne
Power outages in most of the district offices of the Electoral Commission (EC), especially in the Ashanti Region, have rendered several voters, whose names were deleted by the EC in accordance with the Supreme Court order, incapable of being re-registered, Mr Sam Pyne, Ashanti Regional Secretary of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), has said.
The EC at the moment is re-registering voters whose names were deleted because they used the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). The exercise is being done simultaneously with the exhibition of the register.
On Tuesday, the Director of Communications at the EC, Eric Dzakpasu said: “As at the close of work yesterday, [Monday, July 25], out of the 56,772 deleted, 14,801 have re-registered. Those who are not coming, we will be expecting them to come in their numbers so that we can get them re-registered [in order] that they can vote, but they are not coming as we expected them to come”.
“The least we can do under this circumstance is to reach out to them, intensify the publicity, help them to know that the exercise is ongoing so they should come back and re-register.”
“Our publicity vans are all over, the National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) is on the ground, we have involved the churches and the community leaders and traditional rulers and in some areas, they have deployed gong-gong beaters to announce to the community so that they come out and take part in the re-registration as well as the exhibition exercise.”
Speaking in an interview with Chief Jerry Forson, host of Ghana Yensom on Accra 100.5 FM Wednesday, July 27, Mr Pyne attributed the inability of several people to be re-registered to power outages. “The district offices of the Electoral Commission are experiencing power outages, and that is making it impossible for the exhibition and re-registration to move on smoothly. Today is the ninth day, and the deadline is tomorrow, yet several voters whose names were deleted have not been able to re-register.”
“Secondly, inadequate publicity also caused the low turnout at the registration centres; some voters are far away from where they registered, and you ask yourself: ‘How many people will like to go through that difficulty to travel long distances to re-register’.”
Mr Pyne further told host Forson that the EC would need to extend the duration of the re-registration and the exhibition in order to get all the voters re-registered. “If they [EC] don’t extend the duration, a lot of voters through no fault of theirs, will not be able to vote because their names will not be on the register.”