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Politics of Thursday, 1 December 2016

Source: Saaka Alhassan Algore

Reject Politicians who fan ethnic and religious divisions – REEWARG

By: Saaka Alhassan Algore; Tamale

The Northern Regional Election Early Warning and Response Group (REEWARG) has called on Ghanaians to reject and frown upon politicians who fan ethnic and religious divisions for political gains. The group said the upcoming elections must be won base on issues and not on ethnic, cultural or religious sentiments.

The Chairman of REEWAG who is also the Metropolitan Archbishop of Tamale, Most Rev. Philip Naameh at a media briefing earlier today in Tamale said the upcoming elections should be seen in the light of seasonal events which come and go and should not be the end of the world because a party or the wishes of some people could not be realized.

The Metropolitan Archbishop of Tamale called on the Electoral Commission of Ghana to ensure that all logistics in their right quantities and quality are securely parked, stored and distributed to the various polling centers at the right time across the country.

He also emphasized the need for adequate security to ensure the safety of electoral materials.

He also encouraged all stakeholders in the electoral process to continue to engage each other in a civil manner.

Most Rev Naameh further urged political parties to have confidence in state institutions such as the police, judiciary, Electoral Commission, the National Peace Council and others to discharge their duties free from any interference and seek redress in those institutions.

He also appeal to civil society organizations to play their monitoring, observer and oversight roles in ensuring the sanctity of the elections.

The Chairman of REEWARG however expressed grave worry over statements by politicians urging voters to vote and stay at polling stations to protect ballots boxes.

This, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Tamale said is contradicting the EC's call to voters to vote and leave the polling stations.

He urges politicians to desist from such acts and therefore re-echo the EC's call to voters to vote and go home.

He also appealed to political parties to ensure their messages are civil and devoid of intemperate language.

He advised political parties to select and train competent people as agents during the polls and encouraged them to educate their supporters to reduce the incidence of spoilt ballots.

Most Rev Philip Naameh therefore reiterated REEWARG's earlier call on the youth of the north to guard against the tendency of politicians and opinion leaders to use them for their selfish and parochial interests.

He also urged the youth to manage and control their emotions, avoid being charged into violence and reject any attempt to influence them into violence no matter the incentives or personality involved.

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