Don't re-register voters, use NIA data to compile new voters' register – PPP to EC

The Progressive People’s Party (PPP) has objected to the idea of re-registration of voters, and asked the Electoral Commission to use data from the National Identification Authority to compile a new voters’ register. The EC in a communiqué Wednesday announced a decision to compile a new register for the 2020 presidential and parliamentary elections. But the PPP said Friday that the “compilation of a new voters register has never and will never solve the problem of a bloated register”. It said the excuse that a new register will deal with the issue of a bloated register is a façade, as that argument is made by the National Democratic Congress and the New Patriotic Party to score political points. For the party, the best way to deal with the issue is to make use of data available at the National Identification Authority. “It is an unending cycle of debate perpetuated by the NPP and NDC for political gains at the detriment of the tax payer. “The panacea to this raging issue of the bloated register is for the Electoral Commission to use the National Identification Authority’s data in place of the voters’ register,” the PPP indicated. Also, the PPP argued it will not be financially prudent to spend huge sums of money to compile a new register at a time that the country is having financial challenges. “[The] State has already voted money into the NIA to produce for us a credible database. The law that establishes the NIA points to the synchronization of all statutory cards like the DVLA, Passport, SSNIT card and the Electoral Commission ID. “Any attempt to undertake similar exercise and for similar purpose of identification amounts to willfully causing financial loss to the state,” the PPP held. The party has thus charged government to ensure that the NIA receives all the necessary funding to make it functional so that other organisations can rely on them for data. According to the PPP, the NDC’s call for the old register to be maintained is out of place. “We reject the NDC’s position on keeping the existing voting register because it is a recipe for disaster. “All political parties which believe in free and fair election should rather seek for a lasting solution to this issue by demanding for the usage of the Ghana Card in election 2020 and beyond,” it said.

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