Functions Of The Departments

Head Office

The Commission is located at the Head Office in Accra, even though by law the Commission can meet anywhere in Ghana designated by the Chairman. The Commission is required to meet at least once in every two (2) months, that is, six (6) times a year.

The seven (7) members of the Commission collectively constitute the policy-making and management body of the organization and exercise general supervision over the activities of its staff. Section 7 of the Electoral Commission Act, 1993 (Act 451) empowers the Commission to appoint such Committees as it considers necessary for the discharge of its functions. Such committees may include persons who are not members of the Commission, but must be chaired by a member of the Commission. The decisions of such committees are not binding on the Commission. In relation to the Commission’s officers and other employees, all the seven Commissioners have the same powers.

On a day-to-day basis, the Commission is represented by the Chairman and the two (2) Deputy Chairmen, who are permanently situated at the Head Office. Collectively or individually, they perform the managerial functions of the Commission on its behalf.

Departments

There are seven (7) departments at the Head office. Each of these departments is headed by a Director.   The departments are:- Elections, Finance, Information Technology, Human Resource and General Services, Research and Monitoring, Training and Public Affairs.

Regional Offices

A Director, assisted by a Deputy Regional Director, heads a regional office of the Commission. Unlike the Head Office, a Regional Office and its staff are not formally organized into functional divisions and departments. A Regional Director and his staff combine both operations and Finance and Administration functions. As a result, a Regional Director reports to the Commission through the Head Office Directors, as the case may be.

In most of the ten regions, the Commission is making the effort to locate its offices in its own buildings. The physical separation of the Commission’s office from the offices of government department is intended to provide adequate office space and storage facilities for the Commission’s work. But the separation also has significance in terms of the public’s conception and perception of the independence of the Commission.

District Offices

A District Electoral Officer (DEO) reports directly to his or her Regional Director, and heads a District Office of the Commission. Like a Regional Office, a District Office has no functional divisions or departments.

Election Officials

During elections, the Commission engages thousands of officials of various categories in temporary elections duties. They are not formally part of the Commission, but their services are so vital to the work of the Commission that they must be regarded as an informal part of the structure of the Electoral Commission. 

The District Electoral Officer (DEO) recruits and works closely with these officials. In this connection, the DEO is required to:

  • Recruit the best persons available for the job at hand.
  • Organize and supervise their proper training.
  • Instill in them the correct attitude towards electoral work (impartiality, probity and

Accountability) and to maintain the integrity of the Commission.

  • Co-ordinate their activities in the spirit of team work; and
  • Accord them, the importance, respect and dignity that they deserve.

Conclusion

There are three important things to note about the structure of the Electoral Commission.

First, it shows clearly that the Commission constitutes a system in the true sense of the word. You can see that it is made up of several parts, but you can also easily see that these parts must necessary interlink and lean on each other if the functions of the Commission are to be performed efficiently and effectively. Every part, every officer, permanent or temporary, forms a vital link in a chain. For this reason, a lapse in performance by any part or officer negatively affects the entire Commission, just as an ache in a person’s tooth or foot affects the whole body.

The second thing to note is that the structure depicts the reporting relationships and line of communication within the Commission. These must be faithfully observed. In this regard, a DEO’s first point of official contact with the Commission must always be his or her Regional Director.

Finally, it is to be noted that the formalized reporting and communication relationship strictly apply only in an ascending order of seniority in the Commission. It is true that, in practice, a senior officer will very often follow the descending order of relationship in dealing with subordinate officers. But a senior officer does not have to do so all the time. A senior officer is not required to pass through the officer immediately below him or her in order to give instructions or directives to an officer further below. This means, for example, that a Co-coordinating Director does not have to pass through a Director in order to give instructions or directives to a DEO, nor a Deputy Chairman through a Co-coordinating Director in order to give instructions to a Director or DEO.

 

Divisions/Departments Of The Commission

 Operations Division 

Elections Department (Core Function)

The Department is headed by a Director and is responsible for the following:

(a) Preparation of the voters register.

(b) Issuing of Voter ID Cards.

(c) Planning, conduct and supervision of all elections and referenda, demarcation of constituencies

and other electoral boundaries.

(d) Conducting investigation into maters relating to the creation of districts.

(e) Co-coordinating all election-related activities to ensure the meaningful participation of all

departments.

The department has three (3) main sections namely; Delimitation, Elections and Registration.

Training Department (Capacity Building)

The Department is headed by a Director, and is responsible for expanding the knowledge and capacity of the Commission’s Human Resources, developing and delivering training programmes for the two major segments of the human resources of the Commission i.e. permanent and temporary.

The design of programmes and training of permanent staff of the Commission is done in collaboration with Human Resource and General Services Department which has traditional responsibility of staff training and development. The Training Department concentrates on the design and development of appropriate materials and programmes for the large numbers of temporary personnel recruited for all election related activities.

The Department also has oversight responsibility for the Training Centre in Kumasi.

 

Research, Monitoring And Evaluation Department (Feedback)

The Department is headed by a Director and is responsible for the following:

•Assessing the effectiveness of the Commission’s programmes by analyzing their strengths and weaknesses.

•Monitoring the implementation of Commission’s programmes both during the implementation

and post-implementation period.

(c ) Investigating complaints about the Commission’s activities.

The Department has three (3) main units, namely, Research, Monitoring and Evaluation.

 

Finance & Administration Division 

Finance Department

(Finance And Material Resource)

The Department is headed by a Director and is responsible for the preparation of the Commission’s budget and the management of funds released by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to the Commission for the day-to-day running and operational activities.

The Department has three (3) main sections, namely; Accounts, Procurement and Stores/ Supply.

The Accounts Unit is responsible for the financial accounting of financial transactions entered into by the Commission. The section also prepares the Commission’s budget, financial statement and annual expenditure returns.

The Procurement section is responsible for the procurement of bulk purchases. This is done in accordance with the Procurement Act 2003 (Act 663).

The Stores/ Supply section is responsible for the storage and distribution of all materials procured by the procurement section.

 

Human Resource And General Services Department 

(Support Service)

The Department is headed by a Director. The Department is responsible for staff recruitment, postings, welfare, discipline, training and development, performance appraisal, promotion, personal records and salary administration. It is also responsible for official correspondence and organizing the Commission’s meetings.

The Department also has oversight responsibility over the secretaries of the Chairman and the two (2) Deputy Chairmen.

The Department has the following sections under it:

(a) Human Resource   (d) Transport    (g) General Registry

(b) Estate Management   (e) Security  (h) Telephone Exchange

(c ) Mechanical Workshop    (f) Confidential Registry

Information Technology Department(Record Keeping)

The Department is headed by a Director who is an Information Technology expert. The Department is under the supervision of the Deputy Chairmen, Finance and administration.

However, as a utility department, it supports the Operations Division. Its major responsibilities include:

(a) Computer preparation, storage and retrieval of data on the voters’ register, constituencies,

electoral areas, polling stations etc.

(b) Statistical analysis of election data.

(c ) Keeping the nominal roll of the Commission’s personnel.

(d) Preparation of payroll.

The Department has three (3) major sections, namely;

•System Development

•Data Processing i.e. data Control, Entry and Computer Operations.

•Technical Support

Public Affairs Department (Outreach)

The Department is headed by a Director who reports directly to the Chairman of the Commission. The Department undertakes public relations and public education functions of the Commission through the following:

(a) Building confidence and trust in the electoral system.

(b) Making the electorate knowledgeable about their rights and responsibilities as voters.

(c ) Disseminating information to the public and media houses.

(d) Planning programmes to project the corporate image of the Commission in order to establish

good relationship with both internal and external publics of the Commission.

(e) Maintaining an interactive liaison between the Commission and the political parties and other

stakeholders.

The Department has three (3) main units as follows:

•Internal Relation Unit

•External Relations Unit

•Protocol

Internal Audit 

Finance/Resource Control

The Internal Audit is headed by an Internal Auditor and reports directly to the Chairman of the Commission. It is responsible for:

• Pre-auditing all financial transactions of the Commission

• Assessing the Commission’s internal control procedures in respect of accounting for finances, storage of equipment and materials and other assets of the Commission.

Gender and Disability

This Section is headed by an Officer who reports directly to the Chairman of the Commission. The Gender and Disability Desk was established to among other things assist the Commission in addressing Gender and Disability issues with respect to election activities and welfare of staff.

Serve as a link between the Commission and external bodies/organizations on issues relating to gender and disability

To advise the Commission on issues relating to gender and disability

 

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