The ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) has backed the Electoral Commission’s (EC) decision to start registering secondary school students in schools.
The Commission said, effective Friday, July 10, 2020, it will station its officials at the various Senior High Schools (SHS) to register final year students. This was revealed during an Interparty Advisory Committee (IPAC) meeting held on Thursday. The opposition National Democratic Congress has kicked against the move, describing it as illegal.
The party argued that these newly created centers in schools haven’t been gazetted to allow for their use in the ongoing voter registration exercise.
Reacting to this, the NPP’s Director of Elections and Research, Evans Nimako, said the EC has not created any new registration center and so has not broken a law.
He explained that there are still 33,367 polling stations, but it had become necessary to help students to also register, since they cannot step out of their schools.
“In view of the fact that senior high students cannot move out, it becomes difficult for them to access the registration centers within the catchment areas. And so if the Electoral Commission comes out with the innovation that instead of students moving out, they will rather move their registration centre to schools for them to have their franchise assured, it beats my imagination if anybody wants to disagree with this arrangement,” Mr. Nimako said, as quoted by Citinewsroom.
“The EC has the mobile registration team so it’s just an issue of the registration kits that will be moved to the campus to get them registered. They are also Ghanaians who are also eligible to vote under the law so do you want to disenfranchise them and say that because they cannot move out of the registration center, you will deny them?
“Listening to the Electoral Commission, the reason I got from my General Secretary is that the EC is not creating new polling centers so if the EC is moving the registration kits there to have them registered I don’t think it flouts any law,” he added.