(Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, Jean Mensah kple Atefua wo dzi bé yeoa vor mià Voltatorwó loo. Me kpor wo nyui3dé. Ame wó vordi. No na mià ké nku nyuie lo!!!)
It will be recalled that in a previous article, I respectfully advised President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo and Jean Mensah that the Electoral Commission of Ghana (EC) will not be allowed by the good people of Ghana to compile a new voters register by using the Ghana Card being compiled by the National Identification Authority (NIA) as a requirement.
Further, I advised Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo and Jean Mensa to be careful with the tangent they are following in other parts of the country.
The same advice goes once again to Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo and Jean Mensah to be wary of the voter register tinderbox they are setting in the Volta Region.
I reminded them that Ghana's previous elections have been hailed by national and international observers as a model for Africa.
I went on to state that before the introduction of the Voters Biometric Register in 2012, there was a perception of an over-bloated voters register and fraudulent electoral reforms perpetrated by the two major parties, the NPP and NDC, in their strongholds in the Ashanti and Volta Regions respectively.
As many Ghanaians are already aware, an improved, upgraded new system was introduced and it changed the face of election in Ghana. It introduced the NO VERIFICATION, NO VOTE system in which every individual could only vote after his/her fingerprint was verified by the system.
The credibility of the Ghanaian voting system was validated in 2012 and 2016 to make Ghana's democracy enviable across Africa and the world.
There has been a longstanding controversy about 'ethnic bloc voting' and its importance in Ghana's Fourth Republic (1992-2016).
Although the size of the core voting population in Ghana had been considerable, the Volta Region has been a stronghold for the NDC, and the Ashanti Region another stronghold for the NPP.
Apart from ethnicity, the swing voters can not be distinguished by structural factors such as the level of education, the rural-urban divide, income and occupation disparities.
Nevertheless, strong 'ethnic block voting' in these two main regions has persisted in the Ashanti and Volta regions.
In recent days, aggravated tension has mounted between the so-called Independent Electoral Commission and some Parliamentarians over which requisite document is needed before you can vote or be called a Ghanaian?
Observers are worried and are wondering whether the Jean Mensah-led Electoral Commission has colluded with the National Identification Authority and the NPP to disenfranchise Ghanaians, and to a large extent the people of the Volta Region will suffer a huge deficit.
Is it because the Volta Region has been voting en block for the NDC so they must disenfranchise them?
Jean Mensah’s Electoral Commission and Kenneth Agyeman Attafuah’s National Identification Authority seemed to have planned to use the Ghana Card as a basic document to be able to get a Ghanaian Voters Identification Card.
Jean Mensah is decreeing that over 479,248 Ghanaians from the Volta Region will not vote in 2020, because they don’t have a Ghana Card as a requirement to register. The question is, are they not citizens?
Why should Jean Mensah and Kenneth Agyeman Attafuah decide who qualifies to vote? I wish I knew.
Your guess is as good as mine. They are all in the same soup of vindictiveness and capricious abuse of power to fulfill their agenda. Look at how the ladle is steering the thick soup. Very slowly; and that means there is trouble ahead.
What has the Volta Region done wrong to the EC and NIA to make them want to revoke their rights to register and vote?
What strategy have the EC and NIA activated to take away the peoples' electoral fortunes in the Volta Region?
Akufo-Addo does not respect Human Rights in Ghana but there are local and International laws, rules and conventions that guarantee our Human Rights in Ghana.
For example, Article 21 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights talks about our Rights to Democracy. Section 3 states:
“The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.”
What has changed in Ghana? If we have used the same register for two successful national elections with power alternating from the NDC to NPP why must we change the whole register
Why violate citizens' human rights and cause some of them to go and queue in the sun and rain to register again?
Human rights exist, as embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the entire body of international human rights law. Yet governments in the world are far distant from the ideals envisioned in this Declaration and Ghana under Akufo-Addo is no exception.
Under Akufo-Addo, discrimination has become rampant in Ghana and some infamous statements made by Akuffo-Addo ( President), Honourable Simon Osei Mensah (Ashanti Regional Minister) and the Senior Minister, Honourable Yaw Osafo Marfo clearly confirm their tribal bigotry.
Is there more to it in this amateurish practice of preventing people from exercising the right to vote come 7th December 2020?
Are the people of the Volta Region aware that the EC and NIA want to disenfranchise over 479,248 good people of the Volta Region?
Are they not Ghanaians? Are they not 18 years and above?
Why are they reducing their total suffrage numbers for voters by cutting them off or it is a plan to DESTROY the NDC Volta Region stronghold in order to give an advantage to the NPP in its Ashanti Region stronghold?
Apart from those who just turned 18 years, the majority of them have been voting since 1992 till 2016, and they must vote in 2020.
Jean Mensa and the Electoral Commission don’t have a right to throw them out of the 2020 voters register by virtue of changing the basic requirements of who a Ghanaian is.
If these people don’t have passports and don't have Ghana Cards, it is obvious they can not register to vote on 7th December 2020.
The Electoral Commission's Provisional Code Book 2019 has registered voters of 996,370 for the Volta Region.
The National Identification Authority also has a total number of registered persons of 517,122 as at today and even that most of them haven’t received the real cards.
The current number of people who are likely to be disenfranchised by the NIA in the Volta Region is 479,248!!!
Seriously over 479,248 people can not vote in the Volta Region? Why? Is this fair? Why this ethnic attack?
They all have the rights of Ghanaian citizens as enshrined in the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana.
What is the crime of the Volta Region to have a deficit of 479,248? Is it because that region is a stronghold for the NDC?
The Electoral Commission has presented to Parliament a Constitutional Instrument to amend C.I 91 to make the Ghana card and the Ghana passport the only form of identification before one could be captured onto the yet to be compiled new voters' register.
Parliament's Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, in a statement issued on Friday, May 15, 2020, indicated that if the Electoral Commission succeeds with the intended amendment and proceeds to compile the new voters’ register, millions of Ghanaians will be disenfranchised
NPP MP Kennedy Agyapong recently said the NPP is leading, in an election yet to take place, with a margin of 1.5 million votes.
Parliament's Majority Leader, Kyei Mensah Bonsu, is warning that the December 2020 polls will be violent without a new voters’ register.
The people of the Volta Region will not allow this to happen to them hence it is either they are all given Ghana Cards or Ghana Passports or they will resist the compilation of a new register.
Major Osahene Boakye Gyan (rtd) warned of impending doom should the Electoral Commission connive with the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) to rig the upcoming December polls. He said “If You Want Civil War, You'll Get It”
I will leave you with a famous quote from a revolutionary song in Ghana: “we no go sit down make them cheat us everyday, no.”
Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo Addo, Jean Mensah kple Atefua wo dzi bé yeoa vor mià Voltatorwó loo. Me kpor wo nyui3dé. Ame wó vordi. No na mià ké nku nyuie lo!!!
Voltarians and Ghanaian as a whole must rise up and resist any disenfranchisement.
TT Caternor, A voice from La Dadekotopon