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03.06.2004 Regional News

Help us to conduct peaceful elections - Aliu urges chiefs

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Janga (N/R), June 3, GNA - Vice President Aliu Mahama on Wednesday asked the chiefs and people of the Northern Region to assist the Government to achieve its goal of conducting free and fair elections by reporting trouble makers in their communities to the security agencies. The Vice President, who was addressing durbars of chiefs and people as part of his one-week outreach programme to the Upper East and Northern Regions, said electioneering campaigns and elections were platforms for unscrupulous persons to divide the ranks of society and cause conflicts, therefore they should be alert and unite against rabble-rousers.

"The Government has given its pledge to maintain the peace and stability of the nation by ensuring that we have a trouble-free elections and we are committed to that" he said, "but we are aware that there are likely to be people who would resort to violence and aggressive means to win power and we would not condone that because the stability of the nation should not be compromised for the interest of any individual," he stressed.

Vice President Mahama addressed durbars at Janga, Nasia, Kparigu, Walewale and Wulugu in the West Mamprusi District.

The visit is aimed at interacting with communities at the grassroots level to illicit their views on the formulation of Government policies and implementation of programmes and projects to better suit their needs.

Vice President Mahama said the Government would continue to execute development projects in education, health, water and sanitation and other critical areas in its efforts to improve their standard of living, stressing that the national cake would be shared fairly. Government, he said, acknowledged that it was their power, through the thumb, that sent it into office and would, therefore, endeavour to meet their expectations.

He advised them to send their children to school and ensure that they stayed there until they acquired professions and skills to fend for themselves because education developed the individual to be able to manage life better.

" Most leaders in society, like many of the Ministers here and myself, are from poor communities like you but education has opened the door for us to serve at the highest levels of society", he stressed. Alhaji Bukari Ben Salifu, Minister of State at the Office of the Senior Minister, Hajia Alima Mahama, Deputy Minister of Trade, Industry and President's Special Initiatives, Dr. Gesika A. Agambilla, Deputy Minister of Ports, Harbours and Railways, Alhaji Saddiqu Abubakari Boniface, Deputy Minister of Tourism and the Modernization of the Capital City were among dignitaries who accompanied the Vice President on the trip.

The rest were Mr. Joe Akudibila, Deputy Minster of Defence, Madam Hawa Yakubu, MP for Bawku Central and member of the ECOWAS Assembly and Mr Andrew Awuni, a Deputy Minister of Information.