4 December 2012

Ghana: Special Voting Underway

Special voting for security personnel and staff of the Electoral Commission of Ghana who will be involved in the management of Friday's elections is currently underway at selected polling stations across the country. In all about 20, 000 people are expected to take part in the exercise.

A visit to some of the polling stations in Accra this morning saw a smooth voting process in a cooperated manner.

At the Osu Police Station 'A' and 'B' polling station in the Korley Klortey Constituency of the Greater Accra Region about 500 security officers were in queue to cast their ballots as at 8am, barely an hour after the process had begun. The returning officer who gave her name as Hagan said the process started at exactly 7am and as at the time of our visit about 29 people had gone through the process smoothly without any hitch or incidence. Voting was being done in alphabetical order as per the arrangements of the EC.

However, some people who spoke to our team said they were not happy with the alphabetical arrangement idea involved in the whole process. Mary Awuah, a police officer said her challenge was that they have not been informed of which of their names was used for the alphabetical arrangement and so was difficult tracing their names as one has to be in the long queue till it gets to your turn before you are told to move to the other queue if your name is not here.

To avoid this she and a few of her friends have decided to stay back and monitor the process so they can be sure before making a move to join any queue.

"You come to queue and when it gets to your turn to vote you are told to go to the other side. We don't want that so we are waiting small, it happened to some of our colleagues" she stated.

Jeremiah Boateng, also a police officer shared Awuah's view but added that they are not bothered about how long it would take them before they cast their ballots.

The team also encountered a 25 year old prison officer, David Kwaku Glenn Akpai, who was stranded because his name could not be traced in the register despite the fact that she registered at the Osu Presby polling station and duly applied for the special voting. The returning officer says she is unable to assist him in anyway.

Akpai says he felt disenfranchised because he will not be available in Accra on Dec 7 as his duty post is in the Central Region.

According to ASP Joseph Benefo Darkwa, the Public Relations Officer of the CID, upon his visit to some polling stations this morning, he observed that "everything is orderly and there is peace".

ASP Darkwa revealed that, by 4 am on election day, all officers will be present at their respective duty post and "we wouldn't leave the ground until the results are declared and election over."

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