Ban cameras at polling booths – Speaker to EC

Speaker On GEG Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye

Mon, 28 Jan 2019 Source: classfmonline.com

The Electoral Commission must ban camera devices from polling booths during elections, as one of the means of reducing vote-buying, Speaker of Parliament, Prof Mike Oquaye has said.

“If you want to prevent vote-buying, it’s one of the ways of doing so because that’s one of the reasons why the vote must be secret.

“You take a vote by way of your thumbprint and it shows you voting in a certain direction and you go to show it to a person by a pre-arranged system or plan, and you are paid for [it]. That is stealing”, Prof Oquaye said at the 17th International Electoral Affairs Symposium in Accra.

In the Speaker’s view, allowing cameras into polling booths “allows the doing of a wrong, and that’s why we must regulate our laws very seriously to cover all dimensions of the activity that will make it an offence”.

At the same event, the Chairperson of the EC, Mrs Jean Mensa, dispelled suggestions that the reported allegations of electoral fraud recorded during the referenda for the creation of the six new regions in Ghana, will be commonplace in other elections including the 2020 general elections.

Some videos and pictures were widely circulated on social media alleged to have captured cases of electoral fraud, involving EC officials.

However, Mrs Mensa said the first major electoral exercise that took place under her supervision, taught her many lessons which will help in drawing up new strategies to ensure more credible polls in the future, especially the upcoming local assemblies and subsequently the 2020 general elections.

“We believe that the challenges and opportunities, experiences and lessons from these elections and referenda will adequately prepare us for the parliamentary and presidential elections in December next year,” she said.

The event was organised by the International Centre for Parliamentary Affairs, on the theme: “Building Innovative Strategies for Better Electoral Systems Globally”, with support from the Electoral Commission of Ghana and the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD).

Source: classfmonline.com
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