The Electoral Commission of Ghana says it is going the extra mile to ensure that no one is left behind in the country’s upcoming general elections.
The Ashanti regional Director of the Electoral Commission; Mr. Benjamin Bannor Bio who addressed journalists at a day’s workshop on Election Reporting organized by the Electoral Commission and the Ghana Journalists Association at the Miklin Hotel in Kumasi said the EC has created opportunities for people who would face various difficulties during voting to be able to vote. He said various levels of biometric verification will be employed and in the most extreme cases, manual verification may be used for a specified number of people.
He said various categories of voters who were expected to participate in the special Voting but were omitted will have the opportunity to vote without joining queues on Election Day. He added that certain categories of people including people with physical disabilities and albinos will be allowed to vote without joining the queues.
He said new and robust Biometric Verification Devices have been received and hinted that each polling station will receive two of such devices. He explained that Split centers will receive three BVDs each.
He highlighted the importance of the media as the fourth estate of the realm and stated the EC’s readiness to work closely with the media in ensuring the successful delivery of their mandate.
He lectured the participants on a wide range of topics regarding the forthcoming elections. He touched on the legal framework within which the Electoral Commission exists and functions, the functions of the Electoral Commission, Preparations towards the Poll, Election Procedures as well as Dos and Don’ts for journalists during election reporting.
Mr. Benjamin Bannor Bio also mentioned some of the activities that are currently ongoing as Voter education, TV/Radio adverts, Dialogue session, engagements and interactions with stakeholders, training of polling staff, printing and distribution of ballot papers to regions and constituencies.
He explained the need for journalists to display their accreditation prominently during the election coverage as it will give them access to the polling stations, collation centers and the officials at these centers.
He urged them to ensure factual and verifiable reportage and be careful about their choice of words during their reportage.
He also cautioned journalists against attempting to take part in the actual administration of the election and also avoid any form of confrontation with election officials, voters or any other person at the scene of the elections.
National Chairman of the National Media Commission; Mr. Yaw Boadu-Ayeboafo as well as the National President of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) addressed the journalists on pressing matters concerning Election Reporting.
The workshop was a collaboration between the Electoral Commission and the Ghana Journalists Association. It aimed at arming the journalists with the necessary skills and knowledge required to adequately cover the upcoming elections.
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