NDC kicks against new biometric voters’ register … But NPP supports decision

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has kicked against compilation of a new voters’ register and says it is unnecessary and that an upgrade of the current one is reasonable. 

It noted that the Electoral Commission’s (EC’s) reasons for the compilation is the high rate of manual verification is with the software, not the voters’ register but make it run efficiently and effectively is to refurbish the software.

According to Peter Otokunor, the Deputy General Secretary of the NDC, “if the systems are refurbished and we observe the conditions under which they work, we will not get high rate or incidence of manual verification, it has nothing to do with the voters’ register, it is the software instead and all you have to do is to upgrade the software”.

The EC has asked Parliament to approve GH¢444,846,663 for the compilation of a new biometric voters’ register prior to the 2020 general election but the NDC has kicked against it and insists is purposefully attempting to disenfranchise some people with the new register.

But the New Patriotic Party (NPP) indicated that compilation of a new biometric voters’ register would be less expensive than sustaining and refurbishing the existing one because that technology had changed and there was the need to keep up.

Evans Nimako, the Director of Elections and Research of the NPP, stressed that “the system as it exists now does not allow for full prove, we have gotten to a point anytime we are engaged in registration or elections it allows for manual verification which has been challenged by political parties including NDC.

He maintained that the NPP would support and assist a system that would improve and provide credible, transparent, free and fair elections where the citizenry won’t raise issues of its credibility. 

However, Mr Otokunor admitted that the current system used by the Commission often failed to function under high temperatures, but was quick to add that the solution does not lie in a change of the register. 

He accused the EC of allegedly taking GH¢25 million in 2018 to refurbish the system but failed to do so, which resulted in the challenges currently being encountered and there was fundamental reason for the challenge which must be uprooted. -myjoyonline.com

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