Story: News Desk
A former national chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Peter Mac Manu has said the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) cannot prevent the Electoral Commission’s (EC) new Constitutional Instrument (CI) from being laid in Parliament.
The Electoral Commission is currently urging Parliament to pass a new CI which seeks to make the Ghana Card the sole means of identification to register as a voter.
But the Minority Caucus is against the EC over regulations set out in the CI.
According to the Minority Caucus in Parliament, the new CI, if passed by the House, will disenfranchise many eligible voters.
However, speaking on Asaase 99.5 in Accra which was monitored by todaygh.com Mac Manu said: “Since 1992 I have come across various constitutional instruments from CI12 to the current CI172. Every election there are new instruments brought to Parliament and they ultimately become effective for the running of that election …
“Thirty years ago we started using the guarant[or] system … and 30 years after, we should still go on the same tangent? Why? We don’t grow as a country?”
Mac Manu said the Ghana Card remains “one of the surest ways of removing minors from the voters’ register”.
He said the Inter-Parties Advisory Committee (IPAC) has met three or four times on the issue of using the Ghana Card as the sole identity card that can stand as proof of identity in registering for a voter’s ID card.
“IPAC has resolved and agreed to the use of the Ghana Card as the sole method of identifying citizenship for registration purposes. And at any IPAC meeting, the NDC are invited, but they have decided not to come …
“I have followed constitutional instruments from the Electoral Commission since 1992 and my simple knowledge of the constitution is that when the CI is laid, it can be truncated by a two-thirds majority [of MPs in Parliament].
“So if they want to truncate it, they should gather the two-thirds and go and truncate it, but you can’t prevent the CI from being laid …” Mac Manu said.
He continued: “Every reform that we [NPP] have brought into the electoral system to make the integrity high, they have refused to accept but ultimately when it is accepted everybody knows it is going to bring credibility to our elections.”
Mac Manu said there is a need to stop minors from registering to vote in the country and that “we must abandon the guarantee system”.
“Mr Speaker, I wish to emphasise that the Ghana Card does not have these features, therefore it will not be used to vote in the 2024 general election.”