Use technology to assist, not drive elections – Dr. Afari-Gyan

Radio Univers
Radio Univers
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Former Chairman of the Electoral Commission, Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan  has proposed technology assisted election over technology driven elections.

He was speaking at the Roundtable Discussion held at the Great Hall in the University of Ghana by the Department of Political Science on 15th June, 2023. It was centred on the topic: “Electronic Technology and the Future of Elections in Ghana.”

According to Dr. Afari-Gyan, the use of technology in the process of elections will never surpass human’s efficiency, hence the suggestions to use technological assistance.

“Technology is greatly being used for multiple purposes, some people are seeking technology driven election, but I speak in terms of technology assisting elections, because I don’t think the use of technology will ever surmount the human factor.”

Dr. Afari-Gyan also emphasized on the use of social media as another technology tool that can be used to assist elections.

He however pointed out that social media is not a platform that can be easily controlled despite its variable potentials.

“Social media is not a platform you can control easily but it carries a lot of potential for all the three main actors involved in a democratic election; the electoral commission, the political parties and candidates and the electorates.”

Executive Director for the Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG), Dr. Emmanuel Akwetey, who was also present at the forum was more concerned about the environment in which technology is being used for elections.

He suggested the consideration of the various environments in which technology is applied for electoral procedures before action is  taken.

“As we seek to apply technology in your elections, you must be thinking about the environment, social political environment in which this technology is being input.”

Dr. Peter Boamah Otokunor stated also the application of technology in elections should be able to resolve certain issues that makes election problematic and complicated.

“The process of introducing technology should cure the problem of ballot printing and identify and verify ballot papers as authentic ballot papers that has been issued to the voter at the pulling station.”

Meanwhile, Director of the Election Service in the Electoral commission, Dr. Serebour Quaicoe also argued on testing the acceptability of the technology before adopting it into election processing.

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