Governance and civil society group, Milaban Population Network (MAPnet) has called on the Electoral Commission (EC) to adopt an annual strategy for cleaning of the voters’ register to keep it from the periodic ritual of compiling a new one at a huge cost.
It also asked stakeholders of electoral processes to be sensitised, educated and motivated to assist and support in that regard so as to ensure transparency, credible, free and fair future elections to build the citizenry’s confidence and trust in the electoral processes.
In a press release, the group stated that “the marginalised citizenry and the helpless voters bear the brunt when any unguarded clashes happen in the event the voters register is not credible and transparent enough to give the nation reliable electoral result.
“It is not enough for the Electoral Commission to just come out with an advert to call on the citizenry to help remove deceased voters’ names from the register without any practical, effective and efficient enforcement strategies.
“The Electoral Commission and all stakeholders do not seem to have credibility of our voters register at heart since “elections are not just having voters out under the unfavourable weather conditions to vote but how credible and transparent the register is should also be of concern to all”.
“MAPnet single-handedly conducted several workshops for clan heads, Imams and their secretaries in some districts in the Central Region to empower them on expectations the commission seeks from them towards deletion of deceased relatives who were voters from the voters register.
“The response to workshops conducted was massive but little commitment, dedication and determination have been put into practice since there is no willpower on the part of the government and commission to enforce duty placed on them. Most of them seem not concerned about the exercise whereas others totally are ignorant about civic responsibilities.
“The Electoral Commission should publish a number of reported deceased voters during ongoing voters register exhibition for all to commend them for their dedication, determination and commitment to keeping the register clean, credible, transparent and reliable election.
“Deceased names remaining in the voters’ register is as dangerous as the ghost names being left unconcerned on the payroll and the Social Security and National Insurance Trust pension records because the lost from both is the same,” the press release claimed.