Director of Administration at the Electoral Commission (EC), Christian Owusu-Parry, has said the voter register could only be made accurate if more people patronized the exhibition of the register.
He said the exhibition of the voter’s register was very important in the electoral process because it offers all registered voters the opportunity to check their names and particulars and also ensure that names of the dead, minors and double registrations were removed and corrected respectively.
Mr Owusu-Parry said this during a day’s Capacity Building workshop for Media Practitioners on “Election Reportage and Highlights of the Constitutional Instrument 91 (C.I. 91)” in Cape Coast.
The workshop which was under the theme, “Enhancing Inclusiveness in Ghana’s Electoral Process” was supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The training was to equip media practitioners with the needed knowledge to have a better understanding of the electoral system of Ghana and also to remind them of their roles and responsibilities towards a successful election.
Mr Owusu-Parry said cleaning the voters' register was a collective responsibility and every registered voter must be interested in checking their names in the register during the exhibition.
He urged all political parties and other stakeholders to help clean the register by encouraging their members and the general public to patronize the exercise.
He explained that the laws guiding the conduct of registration was explicitly spelt out in the C.I. 91 Public Election Regulation 2016 and urged the media as stakeholders to educate the public accordingly.
Mr Owusu-Parry said registration centres and polling stations remained restricted and are security areas and that media houses are expected to have accreditation to access such areas and urged them to apply for accreditation ahead of time to avoid any embarrassment during the exercise.
He said the Commission was mandated to embark on a continuous voter registration modalities with stakeholders and added that the exercise would not replace the periodic registration process.
Deputy Central Regional Director of the EC, Anthony Nyame, who took the participants through election reporting, cautioned media practitioners against forecasting the winners during the general election.
He urged journalists to acquaint themselves with the election language and terminologies and use them appropriately to avoid misinformation and misrepresentations.
He said journalist who cover elections were observers and not monitors and that they did not have the power to instruct electoral officials but could only draw their attention to any abnormalities.
He urged all journalists to exhibit high level of professionalism, be accurate, fair and balanced, in covering the elections, bearing in mind that their actions could spark conflicts and misunderstanding.