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U/E: Seven Zebilla residents sue EC for changing registration date in 13 centres

Seven persons in the Zebilla Constituency of the Upper East Region have sued the regional directorate of the Electoral Commission for changing the voter registration date for some 13 centres to August 2020. According to them, although the area was billed to take part in the voter registration exercise from June 30 to July 5, 2020, the EC has moved the date of the registration in the 13 centres to 1st to 6th August 2020.

The plaintiffs, Mr. Anyagba Abugri and six others are seeking from the court for an interlocutory injunction stopping the EC from changing the date in the 13 centres. They insist that the action is a deliberate attempt to disenfranchise eligible voters in the ongoing registration exercise.

Counsel for the plaintiffs, John Ndebugre explained that the Regional EC Directorate’s decision to change the date as contained in the Electoral Commission’s Gazette release on May 26 was capricious and unfair to eligible applicants and a gross violation of Article 23 and 296 of the 1992 constitution.

He noted that August is usually characterized by downpours thus making it difficult if not impossible for eligible applicants to register. Mr. Ndebugre argued that eligible applicants in the said registration centres will suffer impeccable damage and inconvenience if the request of the plaintiffs is refused since a lot of residents may be disenfranchised.

But the Upper East Regional Director of the Electoral Commission, Mr. William Obeng Adarkwa said, the commission has not officially received a writ or suit from the plaintiffs, however, the commission will come out later today (July 2, 2020) to consider the reliefs of the plaintiffs.

“I haven’t received any writ from the plaintiffs yet at our office. But on the other side, the commission will come out to officially [respond to it]. I think consideration is being given to the stands of the plaintiffs.”

“We cannot be an insensitive organization, we are serving the society and if the society has certain reservations about what we are doing then we have to amend our ways. So, the commission today is going to take a stand and communicate to us and accordingly we shall communicate to the media”.

Background

The Electoral Commission of Ghana in a Gazette marked AA1, Number 77 dated Tuesday, May 26, 2020, set out designated registration centres for the registration of all eligible voters in those centres.

By the Gazette notice, eligible applicants were slated to be registered as voters between June 30 and July 5, 2020.

But the Upper East Regional Directorate’s registration movement plan for Bawku West rescheduled the registration of 13 centres to 1st to 6th August 2020.

The affected registration centres are; Komaka primary school, Fetega, Timonde Primary school, Timonde Market Square, Biringo, Goriga, and Timond-Guure primary School.

The rest are; Binanba primary school, Binaba Old Daycare school, Gori primary school, Binaba area council, Tetako primary school, and Azuwera primary school.

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