MP Threatens To Seek Injunction On Upcoming Referendum

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament (MP) for the Ellembelle Constituency in the Western Region, Mr Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah, says he will file a suit in court to seek an injunction to stop the Electoral Commission from conducting district-level elections and referendum scheduled for December 17, 2019.

According to him, his action was being informed by the disenfranchisement of over half a million people who although were duly registered by the EC could not find their names in the voters’ register.

“I believe that until this challenge has been rectified, the EC has no business conducting any elections in this country,” he stated.

Speaking to the media at Parliament yesterday, Mr Buah described the EC’s attitude as nonchalant, saying: “I am proceeding to the court to place an injunction on this district assembly election and referendum until these issues are rectified.”

The MP, during proceedings in the House yesterday, noted that the over 5,000 people in his constituency and half a million others across the country had been disenfranchised by the EC.

He had sought the attention of the Speaker of Parliament to guide him on how he could summon the EC’s commissioners to appear before the House and explain the circumstances that led to the disenfranchisement of those affected and what immediate steps the EC was taking to rectify the situation.

Omitted names

Mr Buah stated that in June 2019, the EC opened the opportunity for those who had turned 18 years and people who had never registered before to have their names included in the register during the limited voter registration exercise.

He stated that the party, in response to the exercise, bussed a number of people from all over the district to go to the EC’s district office to register.

“Some of these people had to sleep at the district office of the EC for almost three days to get their names registered and were given valid voter ID cards,” he stated.

However, he said when the EC opened an exhibition for those who had been duly registered to go and check their names, about 5,000 out of the 6, 3000 persons in his constituency alone could not find their names.

“Unofficial information made available by the NDC headquarters in Accra estimated that about half-a-million Ghanaians who had their names registered by the EC during the limited voter registration exercise cannot today find their names on the list,” he stated.

He stated that in a bid to understand what was happening, he and other officials of the party, went to the EC, s head office in Accra where the officials directed that those who could not find their names on the voter list should proceed to the district office to pick a new form to re-register.

System failure

The Ellembelle MP said with the directive of the EC, many people travelled long distances to stay at the EC district office for days but less than 30 people were able to re-register due to system failure.

He noted that although he and other party officials had since petitioned the EC, the EC had not only failed to respond to their concern but also refused to accept the petition.

“I am not speaking as an NDC person but as a parliamentarian and a Ghanaian who is very concerned about how 6,3000 people should be registered and the names of 5,000 people will be missing and after almost two months the EC has not come out to explain,” he added.

“The only explanation the district officer of the EC gave was that during the registration, the system was down so they put all the data on a pen drive and sent it to Accra,” he added.


Ghana will on December 17 this year head to the polls to vote in a referendum to amend Article 55 (3) of the Constitution to allow for the election of MMDCEs.

Article 55 (3) of the 1992 Constitution, which is an entrenched provision, states that: “Subject to the provisions of this article, a political party is free to participate in shaping the political will of the people, to disseminate information on political ideas, social and economic programmes of a national character; and sponsor candidates for election to any public office other than the district assemblies or lower local government units.”

On the same day of the referendum, there will be the election of members of the district assemblies and unit committees.