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31.08.2004 Politics

Vice Presidency for Muslim not a big deal - Movement

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Kumasi, Aug. 31 GNA - The Movement for Economic and Political Awareness (MEPA), an organisation for the emancipation of Zongos based in Kumasi, has stated that the position of a Vice-President being offered to a Muslim by some political parties to entice votes from the Zongo communities in Election 2004 was no big deal. MEPA admits that the office of the Vice-Presidency was t he highest next to the President and, therefore, a very honourable position indeed; however, the movement said, in its opinion the incumbent Vice-President, Alhaji Aliu Mahama, had satisfied that desire and, therefore, welcomed a Vice-President from any part of the country, who would help solve the problems of the Zongos.

A statement issued in Kumasi on Monday and signed by Alhaji Abdul Wahab Shareef, Vice-Chairman of the movement said: "We are painfully aware of the numerous problems facing the Zongo communities throughout the country - the problems of poverty, of lack of education, unemployment and periodic violent conflicts just to mention a few".

The main problem, the Movement said, lay with the availability of educational opportunities and that it was a well known fact that these opportunities were not immediately available to the youth from the Zongos.

The statement said to successfully address this and other numerous problems facing the Zongo communities, a Ministry responsible for deprived communities including the Zongos, charged with the responsibility of identifying the problems of the Zongos and finding solutions to them, should be created by whichever government won the elections.

It said a Ministry responsible for deprived communities would go a long way to help solve the problems of the Zongos, adding that, that was far preferable to the offer of a Vice-Presidency to a person from the Zongo community, the tenure of which was just four years.