Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) John Mahama has charged the Electoral Commission (EC) to urgently take steps to tackle network challenges hindering the ongoing limited voter registration exercise.
The former president, who visited the EC headquarters to assess the registration process on Friday, bemoaned the congestion at the registration centres as a result of the malfunctioning network and urged the commission to address the challenges.
“This is day 4 of the exercise, and we have been receiving reports from the various district offices… Today, I decided to go around and see for myself. I understand there are five districts here, and there’s a lot of congestion,” he remarked at the EC headquarters.
Mahama continued, “People are coming from all over to register at one point. The second thing I have noticed, and the complaint, is that the network is not strong. And so they are not able to use the instant online registration. And so they are capturing some data offline. The danger is that sometimes there’s a repeat of somebody’s name, not of his/hers.”
Mahama went on to urge the EC to speak with telecom companies to resolve the network bottleneck and allow for faster registration. He also called on the EC to consider opening up the registration exercise to more centres to reduce congestion.
“I have spoken to many of the young people who have turned 18 years,and they don’t have Ghana cards. It means that if we had insisted on the Ghana Card as the only means of registration, it means all these young people I have seen would not have been able to register,” he added.
Mahama’s call comes amid concerns from stakeholders about the smooth and efficient conduct of the limited voter registration exercise.
The EC has been criticized for its handling of the exercise, with some accusing the body of failing to adequately prepare for the high demand for registration.