Ghana: Reduction of Voting Hours - CODEO Expresses Concern

17 September 2019

The Coalition of Election Observers (CODEO) has raised concerns over the proposal by the Electoral Commission (EC) to cut down voting hours.

The commission is considering reducing the voting time from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., instead of the 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The move is to allow for counting of ballots and collation of results before night falls and to facilitate the early declaration of election results.

Paul Abrampah, the Programmes Coordinator for CODEO, said the move must be carefully thought true and indicated that "we have come to a point where we want to ensure results realised after elections are acceptable by all.

"If we change the closing time of elections from 5pm to 4pm, what happens to electoral areas that have challenges and start voting later than any other area because rivers must be crossed to those places and the like," he cautioned.

Reacting to the concerns, Spokesperson for the commission, Sylvia Annor said the commission would engage all stakeholders before a decision was taken on the matter adding that "the voting period will be discussed with stakeholders and the late closure affects ultimately the voting results especially that of Presidential elections.

"The timing is at the preliminary stage of discussion, we are not there yet, on polling days, there are isolated cases of delays even in developed nations and we are working around the clock to make sure all anomalies are rectified," she assured.

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