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€5m EU support for Nov polls

A €5m EU support for Ghana’s November polls will contribute significantly to the implementation of reforms recommended by the Justice Atuguba panel of judges as far as this year’s elections are concerned, Chairperson of the Electoral Commission has said.

Mrs Charlotte Osei expressed the optimism at the launch of the €5 million donor support in Accra on Wednesday May 18, 2016.

“The support will allow us to carry out very significant reforms that were agreed after the 2012 elections, which are being implemented in this year’s elections. The EU grant enables us to ensure that the elections in November will be more transparent, more inclusive, and certainly in a more efficient manner,” she noted.

The EU donor support is aimed at improving the work of the EC, the National Media Commission (NMC), and National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), as the country heads into presidential and parliamentary elections on November 7.

The EU has over the years recognised the importance of the three governance institutions.

According to the EC chair, the support is very significant as “unlike other donor supports, the EU is supporting all the three institutions because the EC works very closely with the other governance institutions as well as other stakeholders”.

“How strong the NMC and the NCCE are impacts our work dirtectly. This will help us work more collaboratively and effectively towards the elections,” she noted.

She revealed that the areas of support for the donors were discussed ahead of the budget of government, which “serves as complimentary and allows us to think about areas outside of the Government of Ghana budget we need to focus on as a governance institution towards elections”.

According to her, the funds will help the commission publish the results of presidential and parliamentary elections at every polling station as well as provide logistics to ensure a smooth election.

Additionally, the support will go into the provision of personalised laptop computers at every collation centre at the constituency level. The EC will also have training sessions for constituency officers. Furthermore, the support will fund the EC’s activities including Inter-Party Advisory Committee (IPAC) and other meetings with stakeholders across the country.

The EC also plans to have voter outreach and engagement programmes including sessions with People Living with Disabilities (PLWDs) to ensure that the elections are more inclusive this year.

She thanked the EU and others who have contributed to the growth and democracy of the country.

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