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Regional News Sun, 21 Mar 2004

Don't physically prevent people from registering -NDC Chairman

Kumasi, March 21, GNA - Mr Emmanuel Nti-Fordjour, Ashanti Regional Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), has expressed concern about reports that some people were being physically prevented from registering at some voter's registration centres in the region.

He mentioned the Roman Hill and Asawasi (both in Kumasi) and Obuasi, in the Adansi West district as some of the places where such reports had come from and said this was being carried out by some political party agents.

Mr Nti-Fordjour reminded the party agents that it was not within their authority to prevent anyone from taking part in the registration exercise.

"Where there is reason to suspect that one is unqualified either by age or nationality to register, the right thing to do is to fill a challenge form but not to physically throw the person out of the centre."

The NDC regional chairman asked the political parties to, for once, put aside partisan interests and help in the compilation of a credible voters register for successful conduct of elections in the country.

Mr Nti-Fordjour complained about assaults on some of its agents at Bekwai and Offinso.

He alleged that at Bekwai, an NDC agent was beaten in the full glare of policemen.

He said, what he found baffling was the conduct of the Bekwai police who, he said, were asking the assault victim to go and look for his assailant himself so that they could go and arrest him. Mr Nti-Fordjour urged the police to be bold in dealing with those who break the law, regardless of party affiliation to stave off confusion.

Source: GNA