Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has cast his vote in the ongoing special referendum on the proposed creation of six new regions.
Dr Bawumia cast his ballot at the Kperiga Presby JHS ‘A’ Polling Station at Walewale in the proposed North East Region, at about 9:20am.
Speaking to the media after voting, the Vice President urged voters in all six proposed regions to turn out in their numbers to exercise their democratic right to vote.
Bawumia was confident of a smooth, peaceful vote which would affirm the wishes of the people on the proposal to create new regions.
Two million voters
The proposed regions are Western North, Bono East, Ahafo, Savannah, North East, and Oti Regions.
A total of 2,260,724 voters are expected to vote at 4,798 polling stations of the proposed areas. Voting is expected to start at 7:00 am and end at 5:00 pm at all the 4,978 polling stations in the proposed enclaves.
Eligible voters would be expected to vote for or against the question, “Are you in favour of the creation of the region? Yes or No.
“The associated ballot colour for Yes on each ballot paper is yellow and that of No is brown. Registered voters within the proposed regions are to thumbprint in the portion provided on each ballot paper by voting Yes or No and not both,” the Electoral Commission has said.
The Constitutional threshold requires that at least 50 per cent of the eligible voters must cast their votes in the referendum, and of the valid votes cast, 80 percent must be in favour of the proposed creation of the new regions.
The Coalition of Domestic Election Observers (CODEO) is deploying a total of 50 observers to the various districts across the country within which the referendum exercise will take place.
This is in line with CODEO’s objective of promoting electoral transparency, accountability and credibility towards peaceful outcomes.
On the day of the referendum, CODEO observers will visit various polling stations within their assigned districts, paying attention to key electoral processes such as the setting-up and opening of polls, verification and voting processes, close-of-polls and counting processes, as well as results collation.
Observers will also focus on the conduct of election officials and other stakeholders including, security personnel and voters.
To help promote general peace and credibility of electoral outcomes, CODEO is calling on all stakeholders particularly, the Electoral Commission (EC), security agencies, traditional authorities, the media and various campaigners to play their relevant roles towards the success of the process.
Specifically, CODEO calls on the EC to ensure all arrangements put in place for the exercise are adequate and ensure free, fair and credible election outcomes.
CODEO also calls on the security agencies to ensure all voters exercise their right in a peaceful atmosphere. To traditional leaders and the various campaigners on the referendum question, CODEO urges calm and the respect of individual rights and differences.
CODEO will subsequently share with the public, its observation findings on the exercise.