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20.10.2008 Politics

Security personnel urged to keep abreast with election laws

By gna

Mrs. Comfort Tsiame, an Assistant State Attorney, Monday advised security personnel to be conversant with the country's election laws and act strictly within those laws without intimidating voters during election this December.

“We need the peace that we are now enjoying in the country,” he said.

Mrs Tsiame said this when she spoke on the topic, “Electoral laws and offences” at a two-day Election Monitoring workshop for about 100 security personnel and Regional, Municipal and District Election taskforces from the Volta and Eastern regions in Ho.

It was organized and sponsored by the National Election Security Taskforce and the British High Commission.

Topics to be treated included, the roles of security agencies in elections, handling the media in elections, managing conflicts in elections as well as democracy, elections and human rights.

Mrs Tsiame reminded the participants that it was an election offence for anybody including security personnel to intimidate voters.

She appealed to personnel of the security services to help stem the “unpatriotic practice” of destroying political party posters in the region.

Mrs. Laurencia Kpatakpa, Volta Regional Electoral Officer, called on security personnel to be professional while on duty during the election so as not to trigger panic and confusion that day.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Bernard Dery, the Volta Region Regional Police Commander, appealed to the security services to be neutral by creating an enabling environment for political parties to go about their activities towards securing free and fair election.

“The security personnel and the Electoral Commission (EC) will be held responsible should there be any lapses during and after the elections.”

“As we are policing the people, they are also watching us so we should not relent in our efforts to prevent crime as it is our paramount responsibility”, he said.

Mr. Dery, who heads the Volta Regional Election Task Force, assured the personnel that they would be well equipped to enable them perform their duties professionally during the election.

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