The Eastern Regional branch of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) onThursday 8th September 2016 engaged political party youth activists in an open forum with the theme “Empowering The Youth To Stand Up For Ghana For A Peaceful Election”. Representatives from the Kwahu West electoral commission as well as the Nkawkaw police divisional command were all in attendance. The forum was aimed at educating youth activists to ensure a peaceful atmosphere during election 2016.
Addressing the forum on the topic, “The Electoral Process and Procedures (Electoral offences and sanctions/overview of CI94)”, Mr G.W.Paaku electoral officer for Kwahu West outlined electoral processes involved before elections are held.
He said to create a constituency, the EC makes demarcations based on population, distance and afterwards arrive at the creation of polling stations. He confirmed there are 26 electoral areas and 136 polling stations in Nkawkaw. He also said the EC has the responsibility of providing registration centers for the registration of electorates and period for exhibition to correct anomalies.
Speaking on the issue of polling day offences he advised political party youth activists to desist from campaigning on Election Day. He warned against removal of party posters and inducement as threat to influence voters. He further cautioned the youth and party sympathizers to stop cultivating the habit of displaying party colors at the election center.
Mr Augustine Bosurukyi Deputy director for the Eastern regional office of the National Commission for Civic Education also spoke on the topic, “Code of Conduct for Political Parties and Directive Principles of State Policy”.
He said all the political parties in the country converged together and came up with the code of conduct in a collective agreement for the sake of peace. He asserted that the conduct forbids party activists from carrying weapons and ammunitions on Election Day.
He also advised them to maintain calmness during rallies and political durbars. He said they must all adhere to the public order act, collaborate with the security agencies to meet in cordial manner to resolve issues.
Mr. Bosurukyi entreated all party and youth activists to help safeguard electoral officers and laws governing the electoral process during election 2016. He also urged the parties to accept election results in good faith or seek court action in the event that they disagree with results announced by the E.C.
Speaking on the topic “The Public Order Act & Election2016; Prospects and Challenges”, the Nkawkaw divisional commander, Chief Superintendent James Sarfo Peprah said the public order act was designed to protect the state. He said the act was enacted on 30th December 1994 with the purpose of preventing chaotic circumstances. He explained that the act has three parts, namely; holding of special events, powers to impose curfew and the control of arms and ammunitions.
Superintendent Peprah said special events include procession, demonstration, parade, carnival, street dance, celebration of traditional customs, festivals and public meetings. He advised parties to write to the police officially to notify them anytime they plan to embark on any special event. He said the police must be notified five days before the date of the event.
Source: Agoo News/ Kofi Boahen Dankwa