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05.08.2005 Regional News

Approach Representative Bill with caution- Forum

Ho, Aug. 5, GNA - The Principle underlying the inalienable right of Ghanaians to vote in the country's general elections, has never been in doubt, but moves to give legislative backing to that principle regarding Ghanaians living abroad needed to be approached cautiously. This impression arose at the public forum on "The People Representation (Amendment) and "Whistle Blowers Bills in Ho on Thursday. The Forum was also near unanimous regarding the necessity for the Whistle blowers Bill whose absence contributors argued, made it dangerous for people to blow the whistle on corrupt and other wrong practices in official circles. Forty (40) people had the opportunity to express their view on the two bills in a packed-to-capacity main conference hall of the Freedom Hotel. Mr. Kofi Tenasu Gbedemah, of the Community Radio Network (CORANET) said, "I support the franchise one hundred percent but the removal of the restrictions to the franchise should be preceded by proper documentation on all Ghanaians living abroad. He said there was the problem of illegal Ghanaian immigrants and those with criminal records. On the Whistle Blowers Bill, Mr. Gbedemah said it is long over-due because many people who mustered the courage to stand against wrong-doing in officialdom virtually came up against "stone walls". He said there is the need for the citizenry to have the courage and confidence to do the right things and not to protect their friends and family members.