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Politics Thu, 29 Nov 2012

CODEO Applauds Ec On Bvr Exercise

By: Mohammed S. Ibrahim—The Accra Times

The Coalition of Domestic Election Observers [CODEO] has described the just ended Biometric Voting Registration [BVR] Exercise as very successful.

The successful exercise conducted by the Electoral Commission of Ghana between March and May 2012 has once again propelled Ghana’s democratic credentials in the globe to another height

According to a survey report conducted by the Coalition indicates that the exercise was successful but however with some shortcomings in the area of equipment malfunction.

The report cited equipment malfunctioning as the main challenge that confronted the exercise as several machined being used broke down before the end of each day.

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During the exercise, the report says provision of one’s identity did not pose any difficulty for the vast majority of Ghanaians, with a national average of 88% managing to provide proof of national identity, often using their old voter identity card as proof.

The report further shows that most registrants were adequately informed about the date of registration in their communities, with nearly nine out of ten (87%) responding in affirmative.

Briefing pressmen in Accra on Monday on the outcome of the BVR, Prof. Miranda Greenstreet, CODEO Co-Chairperson described the exercise as accurate which will contribute to peaceful and credible elections as well as deepens Ghana’s democracy.

She explained that her outfit trained and deployed around 650 personnel to 600 registration centers drawn from 300 Electoral Areas within 100 districts nationwide to monitor and report on the exercise.

In recommendation, the Coalition called on the Electoral Commission to take extra care in providing adequate protection from the weather and any conditions that will cause the breakdown of the verification equipment in order to prevent a national crisis.

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CODEO also tasked the EC to ensure the provision of adequate back-ups at all polling stations and the presence of the needed technical assistants.

Other recommendations includes the adequate training of staff in the use and management of verification equipment on election day, and the need to disseminate information through media outlets to increase voter/public awareness on the use of verification equipment on polling day so as to bolster confidence in the verification process.

The Coalition further called on the Ghana Police Service and the Attorney Generals Department to speed up the investigations and prosecution of alleged perpetrators of violence during the BVR exercise.

‘’ This process must be publicized to send a message of non-tolerance violence behavior to the public and to also enhance public confidence in the justice administration institutions of the state’’ she said.

CODEO Prof Miranda indicated will continue to monitor the progress of action against these offenses and other future related cases.

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She announced that they are in the final stages of training and deployment of approximately 4000 of CODEO members to selected polling stations throughout the nation on December 7th.’’ We would once again undertake the Parallel Vote Tabulation [PVT] methodology on December 7’’.

The Methodology according Prof. Miranda which was successfully pioneered during election 2008 will enable CODEO to verify the accuracy of the Presidential results as declared by the EC.

CODEO she pointed out will once again brief the media on December 5th on its final preparations to observe the December 7th General Elections.

Source: The Accra Times