According to the report which was compiled from 6am to midday indicated “that the arrangements put in place by the EC for setup and opening of polls were adequate at most polling stations.”
It however encouraged more Ghanaians to vote before the deadline which is 5pm.
Below is the full statement:
The Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO) has deployed 700 trained, accredited, non-partisan rapid response observers to observe the District Level Elections (DLE). Of this number, 500 are Stationary Observers assigned to 500 randomly selected polling stations in 86 districts located in the 10 regions of Ghana. The remaining 200 are conducting roaming observation within these districts. CODEO’s observers are ordinary Ghanaians who have volunteered their time to help ensure that registered voters can freely cast their ballot on Election Day.
This mid-day situational statement is based on reports CODEO has received from its Stationary Observers, Regional Coordinators (RCs) and District Supervisors (DSs) deployed in 86 districts (See Annex A for the list of districts). The report focuses on the setting up, and opening of polling stations.
Below are highlights of field reports received from over 200 CODEO Stationary Observers from every selected district as of 12:00 PM today (i.e. Election Day, September 1, 2015).
Arrival at Polling Stations
· By 6:00AM, all CODEO Stationary Observers had reported at their assigned polling station.
· 67% of polling officers were present at the polling stations as required by the Electoral Commission’s (EC) regulation, which requires them to be present at their assigned polling stations by 6:30AM. In a third (33%) of polling stations, the polling officials were not present at the time CODEO Stationary Observers arrived.
· In 99% of the polling stations, the electoral officials respected CODEO Observers’ status as EC’s accredited election observers and permitted them to observe the polls.
Setting Up of Polls
· Overall, 87% of the polling stations had opened by 8:00AM. Of this, 37% had opened by 7:15AM and 50% between 7:16 and 8:00AM.
· Reports from 91% of CODEO Stationary Observers showed that the polling stations were set up so voters could mark their ballots in secret. However, in 9% of polling stations, the set up was not according to the regulations.
· According to CODEO Stationary Observers, almost all polling stations (96%), were accessible to persons with disability and the elderly.
· At the time of set up, 94% of CODEO Stationary Observers reported that there were polling agents representing candidates at the polling stations.
· CODEO Stationary Observers reported seeing uniformed security personnel at post at 80% of polling stations.
· Reports received from CODEO Stationary Observers showed that in 82% of the polling stations, all election materials were available at the time of opening. In 16% of polling stations, tactile ballots were absent, while 2% of the polling stations had no endorsing ink and ballot boxes, respectively.
· CODEO Stationary Observers report that all polling stations (100%) had biometric verification machines at the time of setup.
· At 99% of polling stations, CODEO Stationary Observers could confirm that the DLE and the Unit Committee Elections (UCE) ballot boxes were shown to be empty, sealed and placed in public view before the commencement of voting.
Reports received from CODEO Observers suggest that voting started smoothly at all the polling stations in the districts being observed. However, CODEO Observers report minor incidents, such as intimidation and harassment, disruption of the voting process, and breakdown of Biometric Devices at some polling stations.
· In general, although CODEO Observers report that biometric voting devices were functioning well at polling stations observed, there are recorded cases of breakdown of the devices at some polling stations.
These temporary breakdowns were however, resolved promptly and did not have any major impact on voting process. The affected stations included RC Primary School polling center in Nyamekrom Electoral area, New Juabeng Municipality in the Eastern Region, and the Presby Primary School polling station of the Abepotia/Odumase Electoral area in the Kwahu West Municipality of the Eastern Region.
· At MA Primary School polling station at Abetensu of the Nkawanda/Kwahu Jejeti Electoral area in the Eastern Region, data on the Biometric device did not match the voter’s register.
· At the Biribiwoman D/A JHS polling station at the Amansie Central in the Ashanti Region, voting was suspended for almost 1 hour, because a candidate’s name was spelt wrongly.
· At Nkyenekyene Electoral area of the Kwahu South district of the Eastern Region, voting was disrupted because demonstrators demanded that government fulfills promises made to them during the 2012 elections. At the time of filing this report, although the demonstration has been called off, the demonstrators are threatening to deal with anyone who shows up to vote.
From the foregoing, CODEO, in this mid-day situational report can confidently confirm that the arrangements put in place by the EC for setup and opening of polls were adequate at most polling stations. CODEO is continuing to receive reports from its observers, and will release updated reports in due course. Finally, CODEO urges all Ghanaians to go and vote in the District Level Elections.
CODEO’s district assembly and unit committee elections observation is made possible with the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Ghana.
Appendix A: List of the 86 Project Districts
|Western Region – 9 districts||Central Region – 9 districts||Greater Accra Region – 8 districts|
|Wassa Amenfi East||Mfantsiman||Adenta|
|Ellembele||Awutu Senya East||Ga East|
|Suaman Dadieso||Awutu Senya||La-Nkwantanang-Madina|
|Sefwi-Bia-West||Abura-Aseibu-KwamanKese||Shai Osudoku (Dodowa )|
|Nzema East||Ekumfi||Weija (Ga South) Municipal|
|Jomoro||Assin North||Ablekuma (AMA)|
|Shama||Gomoa East||Ga West|
|Prestea/Huni Valley||Assin Central Municipal||Ledzokuku/Krowor Municipal|
|Wassa Amenfi West||Komenda-Edina-Egyafo-Abi|
|Volta Region||Eastern Region – 9 districts||Ashanti Region – 10 districts|
|Ho Municipal||Kwahu East||Sekyere Afram Plains|
|Ketu South||Birim Central||Asante Akim North|
|Keta Municipal||Kwahu South||Bosome Freho|
|North Tongu||Birim South||Afigya Kwabre|
|Akatsi||New Juaben||Adansi North|
|Krachi West||Kwahu West||Sekyere East|
|Nkwanta South||Yilo Krobo||Offinso South|
|Kwahu North||Amansie Central|
|Brong Ahafo Region – 9 districts||Northern Region – 9 districts||Upper East Region – 8 districts|
|Asunafo North||Nanumba North||Kasena Nankana West|
|Asutifi North||Central Gonja||Talensi|
|Techiman Municipal||Yendi Municipal||Bolgatanga|
|Dormaa Municipal||Mamprusi West||Bawku Municipal|
|Berekum Municipal||Sagnarigu||Builsa North|
|Sene||Savelugu Nanton||Garu Tempane|
|Upper West Region – 7 districts|