The youth wing of the biggest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has joined its mother party in expressing displeasure in the deployment of security personnel to parts of the country ahead of the voter registration exercise.
With the Volta Region being its main focus, the NDC youth wing in a statement said it has “observed with utmost disgust, the ongoing incidences of attempted voter suppression and the unprovoked deployment of brutish force by some military personnel in the Volta Region ahead of the upcoming voter registration exercise by the remote controlled-led Jean Mensah.”
According to the youth wing, this is “a gross affront to our democratic credentials and a distasteful punch to the floating climate of peace in the Volta Region and the country at large”.
There have been concerns raised over the deployment of military personnel to some parts of the country, one of which is the Volta Region.
Even though there are suggestions that the deployment was to secure Ghana’s borders because of COVID-19 and the illegal entry of foreigners into the country, the main opposition party is of the view that the presence of the military in the regions known to be NDC strongholds is to intimidate residents ahead of the voter registration exercise which starts on Tuesday, June 30.
The flagbearer of the party, John Dramani Mahama has already condemned the situation, adding that the deployment is causing fear and panic among residents.
Also, in efforts to rectify the situation, some members of the NDC who belong to the Volta caucus on the Minority side in Parliament have decided to storm the Ketu South District in the Volta Region today, Monday, June 29, 2020.
The National Youth Wing of the opposition party expressed as “regrettable”, the military’s intimidation of “these innocent civilians who are only lacing their boots to patriotically participate in Tuesday’s exercise when it officially begins”.
The statement signed by the NDC National Youth Organizer, George Opare Addo also warned the security personnel in the Volta Region “to be minded in their dealings to avert any untoward scenes and disturbing reactions”.
Should such an incident happens, George Addo urged the “party’s support base, young people, and the general citizenry to take the names of the security officers as displayed on their badges, pictures and videos if they assault anyone in the registration process”.
Below is the press statement:
PRESS STATEMENT BY THE NATIONAL YOUTH ORGANIZER OF THE NDC, ON THE CURRENT INCIDENCES OF VOTER SUPPRESSION AND THE UNPROVOKED INTIMIDATION BY THE MILITARY IN THE VOLTA REGION
The National Youth Wing of the National Democratic Congress has observed with utmost disgust, the ongoing incidences of attempted voter suppression and the unprovoked deployment of brutish force by some military personnel in the Volta Region; ahead of the upcoming voter registration exercise by the remote controlled-led Jean Mensah of the Electoral Commission.
As a thriving youth force of the most successful political party in Ghana, we consider the recent developments as a gross affront to our democratic credentials and a distasteful punch to the floating climate of peace in the Volta Region and the country at large. Even though disappointed, these crude and oppressive acts are nothing but by-products of the repeated callousness, which has been demonstrated by the New Patriotic Party, together with its shortsighted and divisive leader, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo. For a man who continues to make very boastful assertions about his commitment to the protection of human rights, it is gravely ironical that such gleeful violations occur right under his nose.
Following the recent verdict by the nation’s apex court, we have boldly expressed our disappointment in the judgment. However, despite our deep-seated reservations, as a law-abiding political organization, we have commenced frantic and fervent preparations to be able to peacefully and vigilantly participate in the upcoming voter registration exercise. It is, therefore, unsettling to observe on the other hand that, the New Patriotic Party and President Akufo Addo are rather using their incumbency to perpetuate such tyrannous intimidation of harmless citizens in the Volta Region.
For the avoidance of doubt, the residents of the Volta Region are also citizens of Ghana, who are enjoined by law to enjoy unfettered access to all public events and national exercises without any form of suppression, exemption or deceitful mechanisms to elbow their participation and active involvement. On the back of this premise, it is regrettable for the military to be intimidating these innocent civilians who are only lacing their boots to patriotically participate in Tuesday’s exercise when it officially begins.
As a responsible but firm and proactive set of young people, we are therefore using this medium to strongly and conclusively urge the troops in the Volta Region to be minded in their dealings to avert any untoward scenes and disturbing reactions. On this same token, we are further asking President Nana Akufo Addo and the hierarchy of the military to quickly resolve these worrying development, while they may. Should this call be ignored, we shall employ very decisive and impactful mediums to enforce our collective advocacy and that of the interest of the good people of the Volta Region, and in all other places where such hostilities may be demonstrated by any individual or group of persons.
We are charged by the events of the despicable Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election and we by this notice SERVE STRONG WARNING that if even one individual loses his/her life or is injured in the event of the registration process, the National Democratic Congress, NDC, and its YOUTH WING will respond fiercely and harshly to the perpetrator(s) of that assault whether acting under the guise of uniformed security or acting irresponsibly as an agent of this misled Akufo Addo Government. The Ghana Police Service today has a new branch known as the NPP (New Patriotic Police) that run on the instructions of the NPP.
The ‘Militants’ on our side and young people in the NDC have taken caution from Government’s white paper on the Ayawaso West Wuogon Commission’s report that the hooliganism perpetrated by Akufo Addo’s ‘invisible force’ members enrolled into our once respected security will always go unpunished.
Under my command, as the NDC’s National Youth Organizer, I am directing all our party’s support base, young people, and the general citizenry to take the names of the security officers as displayed on their badges, pictures and videos if they assault anyone in the registration process; We will deal with such rogues of ‘invisible forces’ members enrolled into our security services at the appropriate time. The fact remains that no uniformed person can disqualify anyone from registering on his/her bogus suspicions.
We, therefore, have taken the JUSTICE of defending our LIVES and LIBERTY into our HANDS. There is nothing, absolutely nothing that can defeat the organized will, might and force of mass action.
To the People of the Volta Region across the COUNTRY, the YOUTH WING of the NDC STANDS WITH YOU against this naked ethnocentrism of systemic operations against you because of where you were born and who you were born to. History tells us that when the great Kwame Nkrumah was mobilizing this nation for independence, Akufo Addo’s uncle, J.B Danquah, was sheepishly parading arguments for the extension of colonial rule even at the closing hours of gaining independence. It is ironic today that the beneficiary of a Ghanaian-run-government within an independent state, his nephew, seeks to dismember and disunite this country in the most offensive and systemic ethnic assault and discrimination ever in our nation’s history.
We remind the people of the Volta Region that the national anthem of this country was coined by an illustrious son of the Volta land – let Philip Gbeho’s timeless words as captured in our national anthem, “Resist Oppressor’s Rule”, ring in your heart as you march to register to vote and let no one prevent you from accessing that right.
WARNING IS HEREBY SERVED!!!
GEORGE OPARE ADDO
NATIONAL YOUTH ORGANIZER, NDC.