Guide For First Time Voters In Ghana – Polling Day 7th December 2016

Having the vote is a gift hard fought for and should never be wasted. By Voting you exercise your opportunity to shape the nation, have your say. And YES – your one vote definitely does matter!

Voting gives you a voice in government. It allows you to choose leaders and decide on issues that are important to you. Our elections in Ghana are always so close that literally every vote counts.

If you don’t vote you can’t complain!

Voting is such an important part of the role we play in society. Who you Vote for is entirely your choice. Just make sure you think before you vote!

Below is a guideline for first time voters on what to expect and how to ensure you are prepared to vote.

  1. Vote the way you want to vote!
    • First thing to know is that your vote is secret. No one can coerce you to vote for them or against anyone else. The ballot paper can’t to linked to you. Also, you do not have to tell anyone whom you voted for even if they say they are an official pollster.
  2. Nobody is allowed to electioneer within 500 metres of the polling station
  3. Election day is Wednesday 7th December 2016
  4. Polling starts at 07:00 and finishes promptly at 17:00. If you arrive after this time you will not be allowed to vote
  5. To find your nearest polling station visit the EC website or go to http:// where you will find a list of polling stations by region.
  6. You must go to the polling station where you registered to vote
  7. Take with you your voter ID card it makes things easier when you get there
    • If you have lost it, or it is damaged, you will need to explain to the presiding officer or their assistant when you get to the polling station and they will take you through a process of electronic identification
  8. You will be checked off against the register to see that you have not already voted and to make sure you don’t vote again – a mark will be made on you, usually your fingernail, to show easily that you have voted
  9. You will be given a ballot paper with the stamp of the EC on it and it will show you the pictures and party emblem of the candidates for President
  10. You will be given a ballot paper with the stamp of the EC on it and it will show you the pictures and party emblem of the candidates for Parliamentary Representative
  11. You will place your thumb print next to the person you wish to vote for on each ballot paper– do not mark anywhere else or put your name on the paper or add any other marks otherwise your vote will not count
  12. In view of the presiding officer you will fold the paper up and place it in the right ballot box and are free to leave. They do not have to see who you have voted for. There are two ballot boxes one for Presidential and one for Parliamentary – ensure your vote goes in the correct ballot box
  13. You do not have to speak to anyone except the presiding officer and their assistants and you do not have to talk to anyone outside the polling station about your vote
  14. That completes your vote

Important things to remember:

  1. Plan your day
    • Where is your polling station?
    • What time will you vote? Early is better, even if there is a queue, it means you can get on with your day.
  2. How are you going to get to the polling station? Do you need to organize transport?
  3. Do you need to arrange for time off from the office or someone to look after the children?
  4. Make sure you have everything with you that you need – your Voter ID Card and any other form of identification
    • Take some water with you in case there is a queue
    • Be prepared for a queue and be patient

Your vote is valuable so don’t waste it by delaying or not being planned. Don’t forget the polls close at 17:00 and if you are late you will not be able to cast your vote.