WANEP appeals to EC and political parties to dialogue

Accra- The West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP), on Tuesday appealed to the Electoral Commission (EC) and political parties to dialogue on the proposal to compile a new voters register.

Dr Chukwuemeka B. Eze, WANEP Executive Director, WANEP, who made the appealed said there was nothing that dialogue could not achieve; “Ghanaians should also remember that they have a role to play in the deepening of democracy in West Africa.

All eyes are on Ghana and the integrity of the Electoral process is what produces credible elections,” Dr Eze stated in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Accra.

“In my opinion, I think that the EC find itself in a very precarious position – if it does not yield to the pressure in certain segment of society, the integrity of the Commission will drop.

But if it yields the Commission’s confidence might drop, because what it means is that anything they proposed can be challenged and the public pressure will take preeminence over their own focus,” he said.

The WANEP Executive Director therefore noted that what was necessary was to have a conversation, if possible through the Interparty Advisory Committee (IPAC), which would be facilitated by a highly respected third party.

This, he said would afford those who were opposing the issue to see the views of the EC; “Why did they want a new voter register? What are the procedures? What is the time line? How will that affect the elections?”

“Once they are able to produce that, it is possible that those who are opposing it will begin to understand the merits in it.”

Dr Eze noted that such a platform would also serve as an opportunity for those who were opposing the new voter register to be heard by the EC; “Why they think it is not the right time for the EC to do so?”

He said if this was done, at the end of the day, superior reasoning would emerge.

“What I have not seen is this conversation in a mutual respectful manner; that allows everybody to be heard, that allows every opinion to be heard and that allows for this superior reasoning,” he said.

Dr Eze urged Ghanaians to put pressure on both the EC and those opposing the process (the creation of new voter register) to sit down and talk.

“That is what I am not seeing. The talking is taking place more in the media than in the dialogue rooms or at the negotiations table. I did not think that enough has been heard about the position of the EC,” he said.

He said Ghana’s status as a beacon of Africa’s democracy must always be held in high esteem.

Source: Ghana News Agency