GNA staff builds capacity for in-depth Election reportage
Accra, Nov. 25, GNA – In preparation towards Election 2020, Ghana News Agency has organized a training session to build the capacity of staff to provide in-depth reportage before, during and after the December 7 polls.
Mr. Michael Boadu, Electoral Commission (EC) Director of Training reassured the nation that the EC would continue to undertake every electoral activity in accordance with the electoral laws and in conformity with the 1992 Constitution.
On Procedures for Processing Voter, Mr Boadu explained that a voter was expected to carry his or her voter ID card or voter registration slip to the polling station to facilitate his or her identification.
In the absence of the card (due to damage or loss), the voter’s name can be traced from the Name Reference List provided he or she is able to mention the exact name used for the registration.
At the Names Reference Table, the voter will be processed by Polling Assistant one – the names reference list officer.
The Officer will examine the fingers of the voter for traces of electoral stain to ascertain that the voter had not already voted. “If a stain is not found, the process will continue, but if a stain is found and the voter is not a proxy, he or she will be disallowed to continue the process.
Mr Boadu explained that the Officer would search for the name of the voter in the name reference list with the help of the voter’s ID card.
“If the voter’s name cannot be found in the list, the search would continue through other lists available at the desk and if found in any of the lists other than the names list, the officer will direct the voter to see the presiding officer for assistance (obviously such a voter is ineligible to vote).
The other lists expected at the polling station include; the exception, multiple and absent voters.
Mr Boadu explained that “if the voter’s name is on the NRL, the first Polling Assistant will communicate to the second Assistant – the Verification Officer, the page number and column in the main voters register where the voter’s details can be found.
“The voter is given back his or her voter ID card and moves to the next desk. The first Assistant will make a tick beside the name of the voter in the names reference list as having been processed”.
At the Verification Desk the voter will be processed by the Verification Officer who will flip directly to the page number as indicated in the reference list and locates the voter using the name on the ID card.
The officer will check details in the register against the ID card and in addition checks for resemblance of the photograph in the register to the face of the voter.
“If VO is convinced, he or she uses the verification device to scan the QR code of the voter in the register. The voter will then be requested to put a finger on the fingerprint scanner of the device. The process is repeated for all the fingers if any of them fails on the first attempt,” he said.
Mr Boadu noted that “if the verification device matches the fingers of the voter, the device gives a voice message “verified” from the audio mechanisms of the device. If there is no match, a voice message “rejected” will be produced.
“In the event of the BVD failing to verify the voter after placing all fingers, the voter will be verified via facial recognition. In this regard, the photograph of the said voter will be taken and compared to the previous ones taken during the registration and if there is a match the voter will be allowed to vote”.
He said upon verification by the BVD, the VO will then apply indelible ink to the left little finger of voter and then direct him or her to the presidential election ballot desk.
After going through the Presidential Ballot process and casting the ballot, the voter will then be directed to the Parliamentary ballot desk for the ballot.
Mr Boadu stressed that officially, the poll will close at 17:00 hours prompt; however, all persons in the queue waiting to vote at that hour must be allowed to vote.
In that case, at 17:00 hours the Presiding Officer will request the security officer to stand at the end of the queue and ensure that no one joins it afterwards.