Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Mensa
Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Jean Mensa

The Minority in Parliament has served notice it will block the approval of the 2023 budgetary estimates for the Electoral Commission (EC).

The special budget committee presented its report to the House today, Friday, but the Minority Caucus has said they will resist the approval of funds allocated to the EC.

Leader of the Caucus, Haruna Iddrisu, told JoyNews the EC has failed to conduct continuous registration of voters who have turned 18 since 2021 and this year.

According to him, the action of the EC violates Article 42 of the constitution.

“The Minority will not support the approval of the budget of the EC unless the EC upholds the letter and spirit of Article 42. Persons who attained the age of 18 years in 2021 have not been given the opportunity to be on the electoral roll and to be registered as voters and persons who attained the age of 18 years in 2022,” he stated.

The Tamale South MP explained that his side will only support the EC’s budget if the Commission publicly announces to make provision for the registration of persons who have turned 18 years in this year and 2021.

“I do not see why we should be giving them approval and more importantly, the EC is now seeking to depend on the data of the National Identification Authority.

“We still have difficulty appreciating the EC as an independent constitutional body and NIA under ministerial control. We simply will not accept the EC yielding unto an Executive institution that is subject to the control of the President or a Minister of State,” he added.

Meanwhile, the EC’s Constitutional Instrument currently before Parliament seeks to use the Ghana Card as the sole form of identification for the registration of eligible voters.

In July, the EC placed before Parliament a draft C.I titled: Public Elections (Registration of Voters) Regulations, 2021, which is expected to regulate continuous voter registration.

The C.I has been referred to the Subsidiary Legislation Committee of Parliament. By convention, the committee is chaired by a member of the Minority group.