ArmyAn emergency Ashanti Regional Security Council meeting held today to address concerns raise by the two major political parties in the country, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), in the ongoing biometric voter registration appears to have fallen short of allaying tensions, as the two continue to accuse each other of manipulation.
Incidence of violence in the Ashanti Region since the start of the biometric voter registration exercise has reached alarming rates, with a new story of chaos emerging each day from one constituency or another.
Members of the largest opposition group, the NPP who consider the region their stronghold, having successively won majority of parliamentary and presidential votes in that part of the country since the commencement of the fourth Republican Constitution, claimed the NDC supporters are encouraging foreigners, mostly nationals of neighbouring Burkina Faso, Togo and Nigeria to register to vote.
They also added that violence have been visited on a number of NPP agents who were posted at registration centres to challenge unlawful registrations.
However, the NDC denied these allegations also accusing the NPP of perpetuating the same illegalities.
The meeting, called by the Ashanti Regional Minister, Dr Kwaku Agyeman-Mensah was attended by representatives of the Electoral Commission, the security apparatus and the two political parties.
Subjects tabled at the meeting included the low deployment of security personnel at the registration centres; the tendency for party agents at the registration centres to physically restrain persons they suspect are not qualified to register; and the non-availability of challenge forms.
The office of the Regional Minister after the meeting pointed out that they have agreed to a new security strategy to prevent violence. A combined Police and military personnel will be deployed at flash points in the region after the first phase of the registration which ends Tuesday.
Arch O.Ansah

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