Election 2020: Campaign Ends, Polls Open In 24 Hours

Political activities ended Saturday midnight ahead of the 2020 December General Election. 

Campaigns of all the eleven political parties and the Independent Presidential Candidate reached the highest point on Saturday with the two main political parties- the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC)-pitching camp in the Greater Accra Region, said to be a major ‘battleground’. 

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Flagbearer of the NPP, rounded up his campaign at Mantse Agbonaa, Jamestown in the Odododiodoo Constituency, where he charged supporters of the Party and Ghanaians to consider his “good works” and give him “four more to do more.” 

The NPP Flagbearer said his government had laid a solid foundation in the past four years and would “build a house of prosperity, progress and development” for the country in his next administration, when given the nod. 

Former President John Dramani Mahama, Flagbearer of the NDC, also wrapped up his campaign at the Karikari Brobbey Park, at Anyaa, in the Ablekuma West Constituency, in the Greater Accra Region. 

He said he had a better track record and should be voted back to power to transform the country and promised to create jobs and prosperity for all. 

The two candidates a few days ago, signed a peace pact, committing to peace and decorum during and after the conduct of the polls. 

All appears set for the polls on Monday, with valid registered Ghanaian voters expected to go to the polls to elect the occupant of the Jubilee House, the seat of government for the next four years.  

Two hundred and seventy-five members of Parliament will also be elected to serve for a four-year term.  

Polls will open from 0700hours to 1700hours in 38,622 polling stations in all the 275 constituencies nationwide.    

The record of 12 persons contesting for the lone presidential slot in Election 2020 will go down in Ghana’s electoral history as the biggest slate of candidates since the country began the practice of democracy. 

The candidate who secures 50 per cent plus one eligible vote in the Presidential contest will be the eight President of the Fourth Republic.  

The candidates are: President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party, Former President John Dramani Mahama, National Democratic Congress, Mr Christian Kwabena Andrews, of the Ghana Union Party, and Madam Brigitte Akosua Dzogbenuku of the Progressive People’s Party.  

Others are; Madam Akua Donkor of the Ghana Freedom Party, Nana Konadu Agyemang-Rawlings of the National Democratic Party, Dr Hassan Ayariga of All People’s Congress, Mr Ivor Kobina Greenstreet of the Convention People’s Party.

The rest are; Mr Henry Herbert Lartey of Great Consolidated Popular Party, Mr Percival Kofi Akpaloo, Liberal Party of Ghana, Mr Alfred Kwame Walker, an independent candidate, and Mr David Asibi Ayindenaba Apasera of the People’s National Convention. 

Nine Hundred and fourteen Parliamentary candidates are vying for 275 seats across the country. 

Mrs Jean Mensa, Chairperson, Electoral Commission (EC) at a media interaction ahead of the commencement of the exercise, said the Commission was ready to conduct a successful, credible, fair, orderly, and peaceful elections. 

She said electoral materials, including ballot boxes, thumbprint pads, stationery, identification jackets, polling station booths, rechargeable lamps, indelible ink, educational posters, registers, ballot papers and seals had been distributed ahead of time and in adequate quantity. 

Mrs Mensa noted that the Commission had procured, prepared and distributed 74,800 brand new Biometric Verification Devices to enhance the integrity and credibility of the polls.  

“It is expected that the enhanced features of the devices will speed up the verification process and go a long way to ensure that only persons whose biometric details are captured in our system vote on Election Day,” she said. 

The EC Chairperson informed that 233,632, temporary officials made up of Returning Officers, their Deputies, Presiding Officers, Verification Officers, Name Reference Officers as well as a Covid-19 Ambassadors for the December 2020 Elections had been deployed.    

She stated that a comprehensive training programme had been conducted for the officials with the requisite skills to enable them to perform excellently on Election Day.  

Mrs Mensa remarked that the Commission had put in place stringent COVID-19 protocols to help curb the spread of the virus.  

“Each polling station will have thermometer guns, Veronica Buckets for hand washing, Sanitizers, Liquid Soap and Tissue Paper,” she said.  

The EC Chairperson said more polling stations had been created so that no station would hold more than 749 voters.