Here is the list of 16 new reforms for the next elections

The Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) has agreed on the implementation of 16 reforms to govern future elections.

The Electoral Commission (EC) got the green light to roll out the policies at the Election 2020 IPAC assessment workshop held on 18th and 19th May 2021.

The meeting was the first after the 2020 presidential and parliamentary elections.

The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) which contested the presidential results in court but lost, failed to delegate a representative for the IPAC meeting.

IPAC consists of all political parties in the country and some Civil Society Organisations (CSOs).

All the political parties including the NDC will be bound by the reforms despite its absence at the meeting.

The NDC has failed to attend the majority of the IPAC meetings since the appointment of Mrs Jean Mensa as the Chair of the Electoral Commission (EC).

The party said IPAC meetings does not encourage dialogue and consensus-building but a platform where the EC only comes to announce decisions taken unilaterally.

Among the numerous resolutions was the close of voting time at 3 pm instead of 5 pm on election day and all-year-round voter registration.

Below is the full list of the policies::

Registration

1. Implement the Continuous Voter Registration Exercise to enable citizens who turned 18 years and those who had not previously registered to do so.

2. Set up a committee to deliberate on the implementation modalities for the Continuous Voter Registration.

3. Continuous Voter Registration should be implemented with proof of citizenship being limited to the use of Ghana Card and Ghana Passport since the guarantee system is often abused.

Exhibition

1. Introduce an all-year-round Voter Exhibition Exercise through the use of technology (SMS shortcode). Additionally, maintain the periodic mass verification at Exhibition Centres.

2. Put in place a cut-off time for the Continuous Voter Register Exhibition to allow for the compilation of the Register for voting on Election Day.

Filing of Nominations

1. The Five (5) day period for filing of Nominations introduced in 2020 should be maintained.

2. The period set aside to enable the Political Parties to obtain signatures from their supporters should be increased.

3. The period for the Election Campaign should be defined. It should commence after the nominations are filed.

4. Encourage nominations of female and persons with disabilities (PWDs) candidates by reducing their filing fees by 50%.

Special Voting

1. Current arrangement whereby the Media, Security Services and Election Officials are allowed to apply and vote under the Special Voting period should be maintained until such time that the process is fully entrenched.
Elections 1. The polls should end at 3:00 pm instead of at 5:00 pm.

2. Certified Regional Collated Results should be announced by the Chairperson to reduce tension and suspicion. However, the Commission should state clearly the percentage of results yet to be released, etc.
Security 1. Security around elections is the responsibility of the Ghana Police Service. 2. Ghana Police Service should arrange a periodic platform to engage IPAC and other Stakeholders,

3. Ghana Police Service should provide updates on the 2020 Elections malpractices and violence.

4. Political Parties and the Media must show commitment to the democratic process and be mindful of their comments, as some of their statements have the tendency to provoke violence and inflame tensions and suspicions.

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