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30.11.2004 Politics

Don't go to polling stations with weapons, says EC official

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Kuntanase (Ash), Nov. 30, GNA - Mr Joshua Ofori Prempeh, Bosomtwe-Atwima-Kwanwoma District Electoral Officer, has cautioned the electorate against going to the polling stations with weapons. He said even the members of the security agencies would not go to the polling stations with arms since it could deter people from going to cast their votes and in like manner, a voter carrying a weapon could spark off controversy or violence.

Mr Prempeh was responding to a question at the District Inter-Party Advisory Committee (DIPAC) meeting to discuss issues pertaining to peaceful, free and fair elections in the District at Kuntanase.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP), National Democratic Congress (NDC), People's National Convention (PNC), Convention People's Party (CPP) and Independent Candidates attended the meeting.

The District Electoral Officer also advised political parties against campaigning at senior secondary schools and vocational and technical schools since most of the students were below the voting age. Mr Prempeh said although the EC was not under any obligation to train political party agents, it saw it as prudent to do so since some political parties did not have the means to train their agents and this usually brought about confusion and problems at the polling stations.

He said in view of this, therefore, the Commission would train about 794 party and candidate agents while 805 presiding officers and polling agents would be trained to man 161 polling stations in the District.

Mr Bismark Bayou Marlu, the Returning Officer for the District, called on the political parties and candidates to select credible people to represent them at the polling stations instead of just picking anybody on the street.

He commended the parties and the candidates for comporting themselves since the campaign started and urged them to keep it up so as to make the elections, peaceful, free and fair.

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