Justice for Ghana (J4G), a civil society organization, has commenced its a planned sit-in demonstration at the Electoral Commission’s headquarters in Accra beginning today, Friday, September 22, 2023.
The group stated that its demonstration was scheduled to start in opposition to the Electoral Commission’s insistence on holding the limited voter registration exercise at its district offices.
The group claims that the action of the Commission is in clear violation of Article 45(e) of the constitution, which simply inhibits and suppresses voter registration.
According to the group, this is geared towards keeping its commitment to lawful and peaceful activism. The leadership of Justice for Ghana also emphasized that they have adhered to the letter and spirit of the Public Order Act.
The group officially notified the Ghana Police Service of its intention to conduct this historic sit-in demonstration on Monday, September 18, 2023.
The group has urged all well-meaning Ghanaians and like-minded individuals, organizations, and supporters of democratic principles to stand with them in demonstrating at the Electoral Commission’s office.
“All participants are reminded to wear black or red attire and carry their pillows and mats. Together, let us demonstrate our unwavering commitment to upholding the values of democracy and ensuring that the electoral process in Ghana is fair, transparent, and inclusive”.Justice for Ghana
Group Advices EC To Expand Its Limited Voter Registration Exercise
STRANEK-AFRICA has indicated that it has observed that the entire limited voter registration exercise is fraught with challenges. Key amongst them are network connectivity issues resulting in the late start of the registration, long queues to register among others.
According to the group, it is obvious the Electoral Commission’s current arrangement on the registration exercise is utterly unsignifying and an affront on the guaranteed rights of every Ghanaian citizen above 18 years old and of sound mind.
The group is therefore urging the Electoral Commission to take urgent steps to expand its registration centres beyond its district offices which should be closer and accessible to the other areas that are not closer to the district registration centres.
The group believes by doing so, the Electoral Commission would remove any barriers that may prevent potential registrants from participating effectively in the democratic exercise.
The decision to limit the ongoing limited voter registration exercise to its district offices rather than decentralizing it has come under heavy criticisms from opposing political parties, and the Electoral Commission has even been sued for the decision by the National Democratic Congress and other four political parties.
Meanwhile, the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Mensah, in a press conference on Monday, 18 September 2023 with the media at,the Commission’s headquarters, hinted on the Commission’s plan to carry out a sustained 6-month registration exercise ahead of the 2024 General elections.
Madam Jean Mensa, the Electoral Commission Chairperson assured the public of the Commission’s commitment to ensure all eligible voters who wish to be a part of the process do so at ease.
According to Chairperson of the Electoral Commission Jean Mensa, failure of Parliament to approve the new Constitutional Instrument, or CI, that the Electoral Commission (EC) submitted for approval has contributed to their inability to widen the exercise.
The ongoing limited voter registration is targeting to register at least 1.35 million people who have turned 18 years old since the last registration exercise in 2020. After the first six days of the registration exercise, the Electoral Commission has registered 182,831 voters in all. This number is made up of 94,546 men (53.9%) and 84,285 women (46.1%).
The exercise commenced on Tuesday, September 12 and is expected to end on October 2, 2023.