The Speaker of Parliament, Professor Aaron Michael Oquaye, has redirected a motion by Mr Mahama Ayariga, MP for Bawku Central, to the Subsidiary Legislation Committee to challenge the Electoral Commission (EC’s) decision to accept only the Ghana Card and Passport for the voter registration.
The EC has presented the Public Election (Amendment) Regulation, 2020 (C.I. 126) to Parliament to amend C.I 91 to change the current identification requirements, passed in 2016.
The Bawku Central MP, who is the Member of the Subsidiary Legislation Committee, had appeared before the Committee earlier on Wednesday, but brought the matter again to the plenary, for which the Speaker declined to admit.
The Notice of Motion filed by Mr Ayariga was seeking Parliament to reject the Public Election (Registration of Voters) (Amendments) Regulations 2020 (C.I. 126) pursuant to Article 11 (7)(c) of the Constitution.
Aside the Ghana Card or passport being acceptable documents for registering onto the voters’ register, persons who have already been captured on the new voters’ register can guarantee for others to register.
The Speaker of Parliament, in a memo, asked the appellant to rather appear before the Subsidiary Legislation Committee on the matter and, thus, rejected his application to move the motion on the floor.
Subsequently, there was no motion nor a vote put by the Speaker for Members present to respond “aye” or “no.”
The Instrument is seeking the House to endorse the EC‘s decision to register new voters based on a new set of rules for the compilation of a new register for the December 2020 polls.
The new C.I., if passed, would allow for the use of the Ghana Card to register but make holders of the current Voter’s ID unqualified for registration.
“The Speaker sent me a memo in effect declining to admit the motion, urging that I should go before the Subsidiary Legislation Committee and present my arguments to them so that they will capture it in their report,” Mr Ayariga later told journalists.
“The report will be debated in the Chamber on the floor and at that point, I will also have an opportunity to argue my case, once my arguments are captured in the report.”
Citing constitutional provisions, Mr Ayariga insisted that the Birth Certificate and old Voter’s ID card should be included as valid documents for the registration.