Ivor Greenstreet, General Secretary of the Convention Peoples’ Party (CPP), has welcomed an invitation by the Electoral Commission (EC) to political parties for an Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting on Friday.
He noted that even though the main agenda of the meeting centred on the forthcoming district assembly elections, the party would have the opportunity to raise the issue of the credibility of the voters’ register.
He noted that the party was in favour of discussing how best the country would have a credible register before next year’s general elections, either by cleaning the current one or creating a new one altogether.
Mr. Greenstreet, in an interview with The Ghanaian Times yesterday said the CPP believed in engaging and exchanging ideas on the matter with all stakeholders, including political parties to arrive at the best solution on the way forward.
Explaining further, the CPP general secretary noted that the main issues at stake in compiling a credible electoral roll were the absence of unlawful entry by aliens, minors and multiple registrations.
According to him the introduction of the biometric registration and verification machines had served as a check on these flaws in the 2012 general elections.
To further cleanse the register, the EC earlier this year removed over 150,000 names, he therefore wondered whether the current register was still not credible, hence the need for a new one.
He added that, a current Supreme Court ruling would also serve as a check since eligible voters can now register only with a passport, driver’s license or National Health Insurance card.
Mr. Greenstreet urged stakeholders to help the new EC chairperson, Charlotte Osei, to implement both administrative and legal reforms to ensure free and fair general elections next year.
In a related development the General Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Kwabena Agyepong, has paid a consultative call on Mr. Greenstreet at his office. It was aimed at asking the CPP to join the NPP’s move for a new voters’ register.
He was accompanied by Kwadwo Afari, the Policy Analyst of the party and Karim Kudayah, a member of the Organisational Committee.
Speaking after the meeting, Mr. Agyepong said: “The call is not only for NPP alone, but for the supreme interest of our growing democracy”.
He added: “After the election petition at the Supreme Court, the confidence of the Ghanaian voter in the electoral process has gone down and it is important we all support the Electoral Commission in raising it.”
By Ian Motey