The Electoral Commission (EC) has defended its decision to charge journalists and other observers who want to cover the upcoming district level election an amount of Gh¢8 for accreditation cards. Some journalists in the Ashanti and Western regions have lamented that the EC has asked them to pay the amount or forfeit the coverage of the elections.
This has angered many with some ournalists in the country questioning the rationale behind the payments.
However, holding on to its position, the Director of Public Affairs at the EC, Christian Owusu Parry in an interview with Citi News said such payments are not new since it’s a normal thing done by the commission.
He explained that “we do not have a budget line for preparing accreditation cards for media personnel and election observers and that is why if any media house or any group of observers want to go and observe the process, they have to pay some fees for accreditation cards.”
Parry stressed that reporters without accreditation cards “will not be allowed to cover the elections.”
On the election scheduled for Tuesday, September 1, Christian Owusu Parry said they have begun conveying the materials to the various polling stations.
“The Commission is ready for the elections. As we speak all the materials for the elections are already in the district. Training session has come to a close. We will begin putting the ballot papers and other election materials in the ballot boxes and then in the early hours of Tuesday we will send the materials to the various polling stations,” he added.
– By: Godwin A. Allotey/citifmonline.com/Ghana