The Greater Accra Regional Directorate of the Electoral Commission (EC) has begun training its regional and district officers on how to communicate political messages effectively to the public.
Held in collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the 120 participants were educated on how to effectively communicate with internal and external stakeholders to enhance the credibility of the electoral process.
The facilitator of the session, Mrs Monica Korkor Bleboo, a Communications Consultant, took the participants through topics such as internal communication, media monitoring, media research, external communication and stakeholder outreach.
Communication is key
She stated that communication was key to building trust in the electoral process, for which reason she urged officers of the EC and the NCCE to package their messages in a way that would be devoid of ambiguity and inconsistencies.
“Consistency is key in corporate communication. If you say something, it must remain that thing and nothing else, particularly, if there are multiple spokespersons. Different people communicating different messages on the same subject creates room for suspicion and mistrust,” she said.
Mrs Bleboo said the initiative to streamline the communication policy of the EC was key since it would clearly define the boundaries of communication to the internal and external publics.
“Political parties are also communicating to the electorate on the electoral process, but they will do it within their context. The EC and NCCE ought to communicate more efficiently and consistently to sustain public confidence,” she added.
For his part, the Regional Director of the Greater Accra EC, Mr Kwame Amoah, said the initiative to rebrand the EC’s operations from the national to the district level was meant to have a paradigm shift from things that affected its operations over the years.
In that light, he said the communication policy would play a crucial role to enhance the effective implementation of the five-year policy of the EC.
Mr Amoah said the communication policy included initiatives to embark on rigorous voter education on how voters could cast their ballot in order to reduce the number of rejected ballots in the November 7 polls.
He said the EC had the target of reducing by half the number of rejected ballots recorded in the 2012 elections.