NDC will not support changes in the voting calendar – Mahama

By Caleb Kuleke

Ho, Feb. 11, GNA – Mr John Dramani Mahama, former President and the Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), says the party will not support any changes made to the voting calendar.

He said the NDC did not find the proposal by the Electoral Commission (EC) for a change in date for the elections from December to November feasible nor helpful and would not support that.

Mr Mahama was speaking in Ho at a workshop to sharpen the skills and enhance the knowledge of the Minority Caucus in Parliament for effective delivery of their mandate.

The former President said the EC must concern itself with getting the basics right and ensure full readiness for the election “before seeking to bite what it does not need to chew.”

He bemoaned the fact that the EC had not yet produced a calendar of events for the year, and advised the electoral body to concentrate on getting fully prepared for the elections instead of “proposing bizarre changes to the voting schedule.

Mr Mahama said using the Ghana card as the only form of identity for registration would not ensure inclusivity because doing so would deprive many citizens of their right to vote.

“The Ghana card is a relatively new feature of our national life and had its merits in the scheme of things, however, at the moment, it is being brandish more as a political tool around which all manner of schemes are being fashioned towards elections,” he said.

Mr Mahama said until full coverage was achieved in the roll-out of the card, space had to be made for those who were yet to be served in order to exercise their democratic right to vote.

“The National Identification Authority cannot claim to have covered every Ghanaian who should be registered or distributed all the cards printed to those who have been captured in their system.”

On the issues of continuous registration, he said: “We demand that the process must necessarily include a system that enables all political parties and relevant stakeholders to possess the capacity to monitor to avoid fraud and exploitation to the undue advantage of any of the political stakeholders.”