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EC want to combine referendum & assembly elections N/R CSOs


The Northern Region Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) Platform on good governance has taken a swipe at Ghana’s electoral commission for continue postponing of the 2014 district assemblies elections.

The platform says the EC’s lackadaisical attitude towards the district assembly elections needs much to be desire.

The CSOs said the EC attitude towards the assembly‘s elections has the tendency of increasing voter apathy among electorates which is detrimental to Ghana’s democracy.

The EC the CSOs said should have learned its lessons from the 2010 elections. Evidence according to the CSOs are abound that the EC want to combine both the referendum and this year’s assembly elections which they says will not auger well for the country’s democracy.

The CSOs have also raise serious concerns about no public education for the citizenry to be aware of the district assembly’s elections as it happens in the national elections.

At the last 2014 annual Ghana Developing Communities Association (GDCA) media review meeting in Tamale, the CSOs issued a communiqué demanding that the electoral commission as a matter of urgency take a clear stand and publicly communicate the actual date for district assembly elections as well as the time table for the whole electioneering process.

The communiqué further demands that, the government must release resources timely to the EC for the conduct of the local elections.

The EC the CSOs demand must partner with the media and other institutions to increase education on the proposed referendum on the constitutional review, especially if the two will be conduct concurrently.

The coordinator of the CSOs and Director of Northern Section on Awareness Center (NORSAAC) Alhassan Mohammed Awal who read the communiqué despite know challenges of low education of electoral process carried out by the EC, the uncertainty in the execution of district level elections remains a big contributory factor.

The EC is mandated by section 51 of the constitution ’’the electoral commission shall, by constitutional instrument, make regulations for the effective performance of its functions under this constitution or any other law, and in particular, for the registration of voter, the conduct of public elections and referenda, including provision for voting by proxy’’.

The CSOs coordinator said the trend has trickle down to 2014 where, as at October this year, the election date has been postponed three times (October to December and now January) with possibilities of further delays.

The CSOs on good governance coordinator in buttressing their stand also quoted section 5 of local government acts 1993 (Act 462) sub-section 3 indicates that ’’ elections to the district assemblies shall be held once every four years except that such elections and elections to parliament shall be held at least six months apart’’.

Top among the CSOs concerns was also issues of public education. The NCCE which is a member of the CSOs was taken to clearness for failing to educate the citizenry on their constitutional rights. Questions from the media as to how prepared the NCCE was in their public education however couldn’t answered by an officials who told the media that he does want to be misquoted.

 But speaking to Zaa News, the NCCE northern regional director said the NCCE, Alhaji Abdul Razak Saani said his outfit is more than ready anytime EC come out with the time table.  He further stated that, the NCCE in the region has done enough public education on both the impending referendum and the district assembly elections.




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