Dean of Law at UPSA, Ernest Kofi Abotsi

Dean of the University of Professional Studies (UPSA) Law Faculty has said the Electoral Commission (EC) has done nothing untoward by publishing the new voters roll on their website.

Ernest Kofi Abotsi said the Constitution does not restrict the EC in terms of the extent of making public the voters roll.

“The law allows the EC to publicly advertise or exhibit the voters register. Now, the public platform is not specified [and] the Constitution does not restrict the extent of public restriction.

“In that respect, the publication on the public platform itself is not wrong,” Mr Abotsi said Tuesday.

His comment follows the release of the new voters roll on the EC’s website.

Following the release, the Commission has been highly criticised by the public with many questioning the motive behind the move.

Though the decision is in line with clause 3 and 4 of the Public Elections (Registration of Voters) Regulations, 2016 (CI 19), regulation 25, the Commission has subsequently pulled down the roll on the site.

Speaking on the Super Morning Show, Mr Abotsi rose to the defense of the Commission, stating emphatically that there was nothing wrong with the manner the details were put out.

However, the Dean raised concern over the content of the details published.

Mr Abotsi said the release of voter names in addition to their residential addresses may expose citizens to some kind of security threats.

He also challenged claims by critics of the Commission who have made assertions that the Commission needed consent from the public before proceeding with the decision.

He argues that it is very unreasonable to expect the EC to consult over 17 million people before publishing the voters roll.

“The law mandates the EC to publish, the law does not require the EC to publish on the basis of individual preferences. The law said the EC should publish, the law did not say the EC should consult,” he added.