Member of Parliament for North Tongu Constituency, Samuel Okudzato Ablakwa has opposed the Electoral Commission's decision to implement the Representation of the Peoples (Amendment) Law (ROPAL) in some selected countries.
In a Facebook post sighted by GhanaWeb.com, Mr Ablakwa whilst acknowledging his party's opposition to the GHC440 million new voter role, said it is also important that equal attention is given to the EC’s intention of implementing ROPAL in countries with Ghanaian Foreign Missions/Embassies only.
He indicated that with Ghana having just 60 foreign missions in the 165 UN Member Countries, an implementation of the EC’s election year programme presented to parliament last month will mean “cruelly” disenfranchising a good member of Ghanaians in several foreign countries without Ghanaian Foreign Missions/Embassies.
Mr Ablakwa charged the Akufo-Addo led government to go the full distance in what he described as its support for every position of the Jean Mensah-lead EC, by readily making funds available to the EC for the implementation of ROPAL in every country where there is a Ghanaian, the same way it has supported the need for a new voters register.
The Representation of the People’s (Amendment) Law (ROPAL), passed in 2006 mandates the Electoral Commission of Ghana to make provisions for Ghanaians in foreign countries to vote in national elections.
But until December 19, 2017, when a high court ruled that the commission should see to the full implementation of the law, very little had been done to the effect.
The commission is seeking to roll out ROPAL in this year’s presidential and parliamentary elections by giving Ghanaians in countries with Ghana’s embassies and foreign missions the opportunity to exercise their franchise.
But in Mr Ablakwa’s view the commission should not limit the opportunity to nations with Ghanaian missions and embassies only.