Help EC with NHIS registered voters – Supreme Court
The Supreme Court on Thursday said it is the shared responsibility of all to provide the Electoral Commission (EC) with names or people who registered with National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) cards for deletion.
The five-member supreme court panel in the case in which the Electoral Commission (EC) is being challenged over the validity of the current Voters’ Register said “it is the EC that has the mandate per our orders to delete the names, but if amongst you anyone has list of people who registered with the NHIS card then please make them available to them to make their work easier.”
The five-member panel was presided over by the Chief Justice Georgina T Wood.
Earlier counsel for the plaintiffs, Mr Frank Davies told the court that they were only served with the document of the list of names on Thursday morning, and would need more time to go through to be able to raise their arguments.
He said the document presented by the EC is fictitious, conjured and does not reflect the true list of voters who registered with the NHIS cards.
“We are at a loss as to how the EC came up with the list, because there are no columns provided on the forms for ID numbers. The only column provided are for the type of ID”
“The primary source for registration that is form IA, does not provide a place indicating whether one is using a NHIS card or otherwise for registration. If the primary record does not provide that, then how was the EC able to put together the document?”.
Mr Davies said most of the names in the list provided by the EC did not have NHIS card numbers to show that they registered with it.
Counsel for the EC Mr Thaddeus Sory however told the court that the list was drawn from the form 1A which was compiled manually and as such could be an oversight on the part of the Electoral officer.
The court however drew the attention of the parties to the fact that the sitting was only to clarify the orders they had made earlier and not to review the application, adding that if any party had issues with the document submitted by the EC, then they would have to file an application on that.
It later ordered the counsel for the plaintiffs to submit their written submissions by 11am on Monday, July 4, and also adjourned the case to July 5 for ruling on the matter.
The plaintiffs are invoking the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to declare the Register null and void.
They are also requesting for an order, which would set aside the 2012 Voters’ Register and also to compel the EC to compile fresh voters’ register before any fresh election could be conducted.
According to the plaintiffs, the current register contained names of unqualified persons, which was inconsistent with the Constitution of the Republic.