General Secretary of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr. John Boadu has said, the Electoral Commission (EC) can still go ahead and compile a new voter’s register if the commission is able to put in place reasonable social distancing protocols to protect qualified Ghanaians who will go through the process. According to him, the country cannot wait for the coronavirus pandemic to disappear before preparations for general elections would begin.
Speaking in an interview with Samuel Kojo Brace on Takoradi-based Skyy Power FM, Mr. John Boadu cited countries like Mali and South Korea, who have recently successfully elected leaders in their countries through general elections, amidst the coronavirus outbreak.
“Mali and South Korea just finished their elections; Tanzania will be having their elections in October, and a few more countries are going to have their elections within this COVID period. So, if these countries are capable of putting in place appropriate social distancing protocols to organize their elections, why can’t Ghana do same? More so when our constitution is tight,” Mr. John Boadu noted.
According to him, a proposal for an extension of office by the President, in an event where the December elections does not come off due to the coronavirus outbreak, should be over looked since the constitution does not create any room for that provision.
“The latest date we can have presidential elections, in our constitution, is December 7th. It can as well be conducted a month before 7th December, that’s 7th November, but not a day or two after. Unless there is an instance of a runoff. So, our constitution is very tight on such provisions and it must be fulfilled on 7th December,” he indicated.
He says, the NPP government will provide the needed environment for the Electoral Commission to undertake the appropriate preparations needed to conduct the 2020 elections.
“For us as a party in government, we will provide the resources for the Electoral Commission to work within an agreed protocol, to make sure their mandate is fulfilled by 7th December so that the country will avoid every constitutional crisis that may come from that,” he noted.