E.C. NEEDS TO INVOLVE STAKEHOLDERS

REPORTS about some of the equipment used by the Electoral Commission (EC) at Savelugu, being stolen are worrying, although officials of the commission are trying to allay the fears of the public.

It was revealed that the items were stolen on Sunday night, soon after the limited registration exercise officially came to a close.

Mr. Bruce Ayisi, the Northern Regional Director of the EC, who confirmed the theft, said the items stolen included two system units, two computer monitors, SPL laptop and a personal laptop.

It is quite worrying that the criminals could easily get access to the offices of the EC and steal the items.

Although it is not clear to what use the criminals would put the equipment, there is every indication that the culprits intend to use them to undermine the electoral process.

This brings to question, the EC’s readiness to successfully organise the general elections, without any hitches.

The fact that a group of criminals, possibly political activists, could easily break into the offices of the EC through a window, an act lacking any form of sophistication, shows a major lapse in the commission’s entire approach to safeguarding the process.

This, sadly, confirms the statement made by the Public Relations Director of the Ghana Police Service, Superintendent Cephas Arthur, that the EC did not factor police protection into its programme for the limited voters registration.

It is so hard to comprehend that the commission could plan and embark on such a major exercise without anticipating that some political hoodlums would attempt to disrupt the process.

Thus, some lawless people, for instance, had the audacity to storm a registration centre in the Ashanti Region and destroy some of the equipment.

We believe that the incidents reported at the centres throughout the country would serve as eye opener for the officials of the EC.

They should go back to the drawing board and restrategise to ensure the success of the rest of their programmes.

They should also appreciate the need to involve all stakeholders in their planning, and accommodate suggestions.

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