The two main political parties NPP and NDC engaged in a scuffle at the Christian Methodist Senior High School polling station within the Bortianor-Ngleshie-Amanfro constituency Tuesday when the incumbent NPP decided to distribute food to party agents and some security officers.
The NDC agents at the polling station believed that the distribution of the food to the voters was likely to influence the security officers who were at the polling station to vote during the Special Voting exercise organised by the Electoral Commission.
This brought about a little confusion between the two main political parties with the NPP arguing that the food was to their party agents and anyone who would request for it, but was not brought to influence the voters.
“We didn’t come here with a branded car so why do you say it is to influence the voters? Are they kids that do not know their rights and will allow food to influence them?” A lady only identified as an NPP Women's Organiser said.
Samuel Kpakpo Mingle, the Presiding Officer at the Christian Methodist Senior High School told GhanaWeb that the polling station is within a school premises, hence the need to maintain the peace.
“There is an exam going on and when they make noise, it may disturb them,” the Presiding Officer stated warning that, “I don’t want any noise here because this is a school.”
Mingle added that he had asked the party distributing the food not to create the impression that they were trying to influence voters.
On his part, Alexander Ackuaku, the NDC Parliamentary Candidate, stated that what his opponents were doing was not the best because the electorates were there to vote, but not to revel in food.
“So, I don’t see why somebody should cook food and bring it here, and be giving it to police officers. If people are hungry and you want to feed them, there are people on the streets, why don’t you take the food there?” he quizzed.
Ackuaku indicated that when such events occur at the polling station on a voting day, it creates problems.
“If we are not level-headed people, that will spark into something else and to me it is not the best,” Akuaku said explaining that “We have to abide by the rules and make sure that we allow the electoral laws to work. You are a known NPP Women's Organiser, so why should you be the one sharing food, this is not the best.”
On his part, the NPP Parliamentary Candidate, Sylvester Tetteh, argued that there was nothing wrong with his party distributing food to party agents at the polling station.
“When you are taking breakfast to your people…and when you get to a [polling] station, and someone wants a drink, you can’t restrict the person. Our agents are allowed to feed at the premises and there is no law preventing them,” Sylvester Tetteh defended.