Election officials, party agents to swear oath in court – EC reveals

Election officers will enjoy increased allowance in the 2016 elections
Election officers will enjoy increased allowance in the 2016 elections

All election officials and party agents who are to supervise and monitor the 2016 presidential and parliamentary election will be made to take an oath before a magistrate or judicial officer, the Electoral Commission has revealed.

The shift from the previous instance where an officer of the Commission administered oaths to these officials, is to make them legally answerable for their actions and inactions regarding the elections.

“Election Officials & Party Agents will be required to take oaths before a Magistrate or Judicial officer instead of an officer of the Commission. This will ensure they know the full effect of their failure to work within the rules,” the Commission said Sunday.

In a series of posts on its official Facebook wall, the Electoral Commission has outlined a number of reasons it says, will make the November 7 general elections the “best ever” to be organised by the EC in the country.

Charlot Osei
Chairperson of the EC, Charlotte Osei

Ghana’s Electoral Commission has in recent months come under criticisms from a section of the public and some political parties over certain decisions they deem inappropriate and likely to affect the credibility of the elections.

Prominent among the issues that have attracted bad press for the EC is the country’s current electoral register, which many have argued, is not fit for the conduct of the November 7 polls because it is fraught with foreigners and unqualified individuals.

These issues, some believe, will have bad consequences on the elections but the Commission appears to disagree with the issues as it claims to be putting in place measures that will ensure that “the 2016 elections will be our best ever”

The measures

The Commission said it has increased allowances, which it described as “compensation package”, for all election officials who will participate in this year’s polls in order to “make them highly motivated to deliver excellent electoral service and support to all voters nationwide.”

It noted that training for all the election officials and staff of the Commission has also been “tremendously improved,” and expect it “to reflect in the quality of their work during the elections.”

“Clear provisions regarding processes and procedures to be followed upon an adjournment of the poll have been developed and will be implemented for problem-free elections,” the Commission added.

Voters’ register exhibition

The Commission says it will deploy biometric verification devices to all polling and exhibition centres across the country in the upcoming voters’ register exhibition.

The register for the 2016 polls scheduled to be exhibited for people who have registered to vote to verify their details on the provisional voters register between July 18 and August 7.

“This is to allow all registered voters to verify their fingerprints and know where they will vote on election day. It will also help to minimise election-day inconveniences to the voters,” the Commission explained.

The Commission has also assured all Persons With Disabilities and vulnerable persons that they will be given priority at all polling stations to vote without any difficulties.

By Stephen Kwabena Effah||Ghana

Twitter @steviekgh    

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