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13.08.2004 General News

Refugees cautioned against interfering in election

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Buduburam (C/R), Aug. 13, GNA - Mr Thomas Broni, Deputy Minister of the Interior, on Friday cautioned refugees living in the Buduburam Refugee Camp to refrain from interfering in the Ghanaian electoral process to avoid facing prosecution.

He advised them to be law abiding and refrain from transferring their country's politics into Ghana.

Mr Broni said: "Only Ghanaians are allowed to vote and we may be forced to prosecute those of you who would attempt to participate in the forthcoming elections. Ensure that you all become worthy ambassadors of your country by being law abiding."

The Minister was speaking at a passing out ceremony of the Buduburam Neighbourhood Watch Committee and Fire Fighting Team, which coincided with the commissioning of a one billion-cedi-clinic built by the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) and the Catholic Church.

Mr Broni urged the Neighbourhood Watch Committee to complement the efforts of the Police on the Camp to ensure that peace prevailed especially in this election year.

"You are supposed to work closely with the security agencies in the Camp and should in no way try to usurp the powers of the security agencies," he said, and called for discipline in the ranks of the watch team to enable them to win the confidence of the community.

He commended the Ghana National Fire Service for their role in training the volunteers in fire fighting techniques.

Mr Thomas Albrecht, a Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, said the issue of refugees' settlement security had been of concern to host governments and expressed the hope that with the establishment of the Neighbourhood Watch Team, much of the anxiety would subside.

He said UNHCR had already supplied the team with fire extinguishers and other needed equipment and promised to do more in the future.

Mr Albrecht said the UNHCR renovated a living quarters at the Camp and it was planning at build a new Police and Fire Post as well as a satellite post in a number of locations in the area to enhance the capacity of the Police.

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