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14.04.2008 Education

UDS Students, EC Officials Clash At Wa

A request by officials supervising the Students Representative Council (SRC) elections at the Wa campus of the University for Development (UDS) to temporarily halt the election and resume at a later date led to a clash with officials of the Electoral Commission (EC).

The EC decided to halt the voting because darkness had set in even though more eligible students who wanted to vote were in the queue after 5p.m.

The decision of the EC did not go down well with the students as some of them started throwing stones at the EC officials and a police vehicle that was conveying the ballot boxes containing ballots cast to the police station.

In the process, four police officers were said to have sustained various degrees of injury.

Sources close to the university told the Daily Graphic that the EC printed 2000 ballot papers, which were less than the total number of eligible voters, adding that the SRC made available about GH¢3,000 for the EC to conduct the election, but the EC failed to live up to expectation.

Mr Samuel Sabuli, the local representative of the National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) of the Wa Campus of the UDS, said the students were hoping that they would be given another chance to exercise their franchise.

He blamed the EC for the lapse and expressed the hope that such a thing would not happen again.

He appealed to the students to remain calm as the General Assembly of the SRC found a solution to the problem.

Later in an interview, the Wa Municipal Director of the EC, Mr Lucas Yiryel, said the EC was able to provide extra ballot papers for the elections but the students started rioting when darkness set in.

“In an attempt to transport the ballot boxes to the police station, some of the students attacked the police vehicle with stones. In the process, one of the boxes fell and the students started destroying the cast ballots in it,” he said.

Story by Chris Nunoo

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