The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) have reached a consensus on the need to conduct the December polls despite the havoc wrecked on the country by the novel coronavirus.
The rival parties have not seen eye-to-eye over accusations by the NDC that the NPP may be conniving with the Electoral Commission (EC) in its bid to collate a new voters’ register for the upcoming elections.
However, both parties believe the general elections must come off if the constitutionally stipulated process is to see the light of day as a democracy.
In order to do so, Functional Executive Member of the NDC Alex Segbefia argues that there is the need to ensure that all WHO recommended protocols are out in place to lessen the possible transmission of Covid-19 after the election.
He spoke to Evans Mensah on PM Express May 27, 2020.
“We have to do everything possible to have the election on the 7th of December. It can be done. We have to put steps and measure in place from all the experiences from other countries to be sure that we have the election. Because if we don’t, based on the constitution we have, I think that we are going to run into some serious constitutional difficulty,” he said on JoyNews.
Also speaking on the show, Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah agreed. He believes the process was necessary as long as it is backed by data coupled citing international examples to buttress his point.
“There are ways by which, even for Covid-19 patients, countries have found ways to let them vote so that they are not disenfranchised and that in the end the sovereign right of the people will not be inhibited in any way and at the same time unnecessary risks will not be elevated,” he said.
Meanwhile, Public Health Expert with the Global Health Department of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) stressed the need for government to provide the necessary personal protective equipment, sanitisers, the practice of social distancing among other non-pharmacological modalities to prevent the aggravation of the pandemic during the process.
Source: Kenneth Awotwe Darko