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'All went well' in Ghana, but polls boycott and vote delay at some centres

'All went well' in Ghana, but polls boycott and vote delay at some centres

Ghana

Voting in Ghana’s general election has ended and the electoral commission has described the process as “exceptionally successful” despite a few recorded problems.

“We have started the counting process in most polling stations. It is a transparent and inclusive process and we are looking forward to a very successful conclusion of the elections. Thank you,” Electoral Commission Chairperson, Charlotte Osei briefed the media on Wednesday evening.

Vote counting at polling stations are underway and after that, the results will be transferred to Collation Centres for collation.


Polls Boycott

Among the problems are a boycott of polls by over a thousand voters at four polling stations in Lambusie-Karni District at the Upper West Region of Ghana.

Their reason is the change of name of the district to Lambusie by the government without adding Karni for over six years since its creation, local media report.

Reports further indicated that some residents invoked curses on anyone who attempts to vote, thereby recording zero votes at the polling stations.

The Electoral Commission of Ghana has not indicated if voting will be extended for the four polling stations.


Extended Voting

Voting at Dwarf Island, a town in the Afram Plains North Constituency in the Eastern Region of Ghana has been extended to 22:00 GMT due to a late start of the process caused by the late arrival of electoral materials to polling stations in the town.

Also, voting has been extended in the Jaman North constituency in the Brong Ahafo Region to Thursday, December 8, 2016 between 07:00 GMT and 17:00 GMT due to hours of delay in the start of the process.

The delay was caused by irregularities in the voter register which were resolved later in the afternoon by party representatives and electoral commission officials.

The EC says it has extended the votes due to security concerns.


Smooth Process

The European Union Elections Observer Mission to Ghana has described the voting process as professional and smooth after observing some polling stations during voting.

The head of the mission, Tamas Meszerics, told local television GHOne TV that he was satisfied with the process.

For the United States Ambassador to Ghana, Robert P Jackson, the process was smooth and both Ghanaians and the Electoral Commission did a good job with turnout and professionalism.

The Ghana Police Service also confirmed that the conduct of voters was generally impressive and urged the public to maintain their conduct during counting, collation and declaration of results.

“Consistent reports from the various regions, divisions and districts also point to general calmness and smooth electoral process,” the police said in a statement signed by public affairs director, Superintendent Cephas Arthur.

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