General News of Thursday, 6 December 2012

Source: myjoyonline

Security begins deployment ahead of Friday's historic elections

Police, military and other security personnel are being deployed across the country ahead of tomorrow’s presidential and parliamentary elections.

The police administration has also created specialized subcommittees to focus on intelligence, legal issues, investigations and prosecutions. These offices exist under the chairmanship of the deputy Inspector General of Police and aim to improve the police response all electoral offences.

In Accra, the National Elections Security Taskforce has already dispatched officers to beef up operations at the various districts.

They include rapid response and patrol teams who will be stationed at strategic locations in known flashpoints.

In all, about 41,000 personnel are being deployed nationwide to police the more than 26,000 polling stations across the country.

Director of Police Operations COP John Kudalor told Joy News on Thursday that the officers have been briefed and are motivated to oversee a successful exercise.

COP Kudalor said that apart from the officers who are being deployed, other personnel have been put on stand-by as a backup measure.

This year, Kumasi, the capital of the NPP stronghold Ashanti Region, is one of the main flashpoints. Tensions there have been fuelled by the recent violent incidents that have left three with serious injuries as well as inflammatory pronouncements by the leadership both major parties.

Ashanti regional Police Commander DCOP Augustine Gyening is cautioning the media against sensationalism to reduce tensions during the polls.

In the Northern Region, Matina Bugri of Tamale-based Radio Justice reported that the police are ready to ensure the polls are organized peacefully. According to her, the officers have received special motorcycle training. The idea is to discourage attempts to snatch ballot boxes and carry them away on motorbikes by training officers to pursue ballot box thieves.

Meanwhile, the military has also received a delivery of two helicopters from Russia to beef up its operations.

Director of Public Affairs of the Ghana Armed Forces Colonel Mbawine Attintande said that one of his 5000 men’s key roles is to protect sensitive installations.