The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has sued the Electoral Commission (EC) for failing to provide the party with a provisional copy of the voters register to guide it in the ongoing voters register exhibition exercise.
The party said it decided to take that line of action because the EC had failed after incessant requests from the party to do so.
“In the circumstance, we have been compelled to go to court to seek an order directed at the EC, to among others, give us copies of the register as required by law,” the National Chairman of the NDC, Mr Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, said at a press conference at the party’s headquarters in Accra yesterday.
He said the party, after exhausting every avenue for the EC to comply with what the law states, had no option but to resort to the law courts.
Rule of law
We are a party that believes in the rule of law and so we will always want the law to be our guide,” he said.
The position of the NDC was anchored on the fact that regulation 22 (2) of the Public Elections Regulations (Voter Registration) as captured in Constitutional Instrument (CI 91 states that:
“At the end of the compilation of the provisional register as provided in sub regulation (1), a copy of the provisional register shall be given to each registered political party in the form determined by the Commission.”
“But in our case, despite repeated requests and reminders, we have to date not received any.”
The NDC also averred that Regulation 23 (3) which also stated that the EC, in addition to providing the political parties with copies of the provisional register, was also enjoined to post the register on its website but the party’s visit to the website of the EC showed that they had failed to comply with that directive.
“The absence of the register has greatly hampered our efforts at monitoring the exercise. Indeed, never in the electoral history of the Fourth Republic have we experienced such blatant dereliction of duty,” it said.
The NDC also had issues with the fact that the EC had decided to print the electoral register outside its office even though it had the capacity to do so, saying “this conduct of the EC is not only against the law but is giving room to outside entities to have access to critical data of the EC which could compromise the credibility of elections.”
The party held that the decisions of the EC must be above board, saying a peaceful and successful election was the result of collaboration between all stakeholders.
“The NDC is willing to cooperate with the EC but it must demonstrate willingness to listen to suggestions that will inure to credible elections as has happened under previous administrations of the EC,” the party said.