As part of measures to ensure that judges and magistrates are able to fairly and expeditiously deal with any electoral dispute that may be brought before them in this year’s elections, the Chief Justice, Georgina Theodora Wood, has set up a special election taskforce.
The taskforce, composed of three Supreme Court judges and the Director of the Judiciary Training Institute and Justice of the Court of Appeal, is charged with the responsibility of training all judges and magistrates nationwide on the electoral laws of Ghana.
Justice Dennis Adjei, Director of the Judiciary Training Institute and Justice of the Court of Appeal, made this known yesterday in Accra at a national stakeholder forum organized by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) on the 2016 Elections.
The forum brought together key stakeholders namely the security agencies, the judiciary and the Electoral Commission ( EC),the Media Foundation for West Africa, for them to tell Ghanaians about their level of preparedness for this year’s crucial elections.
Representatives of the various political parties including Peter Mac Manu, the campaign manager of New Patriotic Party (NPP) flagbearer, Nana Akufo-Addo, were also present.
Speaking on the theme: “Towards Credible, Acceptable and Violence-free Elections in 2016: The Role and Preparedness of the Judiciary for the 2016 General Elections,” Justice Adjei said the taskforce will organize workshops across the ten regions to ensure that every judge and magistrate “learn, re-learn and unlearn” the country’s electoral laws to enable them to fairly and expeditiously deal with any complaint that may come before them in this year’s elections.
According to him, the training which is expected to begin in May and end in August, is being sponsored by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID).
He lamented the unnecessary violence mostly associated with voting in Africa and indeed Ghana which he claimed do cause undue fear and panic among the electorate.
‘We’ll Crash Vigilante Groups’
Meanwhile, the Police Service has vowed to crash all vigilante groups within the country ahead of the general elections in November.
According to the police, the decision is part of measures being put in place to ensure that peace prevails before and during the crucial November 7 polls.
Director General of Operations, Ghana Police Service, Dr. Benjamin Agordzor made this known at the forum.
According to him, the various vigilante groups involved in the Talensi bye-election clashes reported that they were affiliated to some political parties that were participants to the bye-election.
However, he said when contacted, the heads of the various political parties denied having links with the vigilante groups.
“Hence all vigilante groups in the country must be viewed as “criminal elements” who want to destroy the peace of the nation.”
He said the police had resolved to provide security for the presidential candidates of the various parties by May.
‘EC Is Prepared’
The EC on its part disclosed that preparations are far advanced for the conduct of the November 7 elections.
Source: Daily Guide
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