According to the commission, it has taken note of the proposals for a new register and will consider its feasibility as well as the cost implication before any final decision will be taken on the matter.
The chairperson of the commission, Mrs Charlotte Osei told Graphic Online in an interview in Kumasi that the EC has received lots of proposals from the political and civil society organizations on the register.
“We are looking at all the options and considering the cost involved in all the options and as commission we will take a decision,” she said.
Mrs Osei who spoke to Graphic Online’s Kumasi reporter, Kwadwo Baffoe Donkor on the side-line of a consultative meeting said while some of the proposals were asking the EC to maintain the current register and not to entertain any call for a new one, others were also agitating for a new one.
The meeting was organized by the EC for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Community Based Organizations (CBOs) Faith Based Organizations (FBAs) and the media in Kumasi.
Mrs Osei said there was another group, which was also asking for the register to be audited and cleaned up before the next parliamentary and presidential elections. She said the commission was considering all these proposals and would soon come out with its decision.
Current register “incurably flawed” – NPP
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) in July wrote to the EC to ask for the provision of a fresh voters register. The party argued that, the electoral register in its current state was “incurably flawed and cannot be relied on for the all-important 2016 election.”
The party also backed its calls on the outcome of the election petition and the Supreme Court declaration in the case of Abu Ramadan and Another vs. Electoral Commission and Attorney General (Writ No. J1/11/2014) that disallowed the use of NHIA cards as proof of qualification to register making it unconstitutional, void and of no effect and argued that, “by this declaration, the Supreme Court effectively outlawed all NHIA card based registrations.”
It said since it would be extremely difficult to purge the existing register of all the registrations affected by the Supreme Court decision, “it is our humble view that offering every potential voter a fresh opportunity to register will address this defect.”
Register is accurate and reliable – NDC
However, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) disagreed with the NPP and maintained that the current register was the most accurate and reliable that the nation has ever produced and called on the EC to dismiss the NPP request.
The first Vice Chairman of the NDC, Samuel Ofosu Ampofo at the meeting with Ashanti regional youth wing of the party in Kumasi at the weekend, described the call for a new register as ‘absurd.’