AGORTIME Z: Forum on peaceful elections organised
Organisers of a political education forum at Ziope at Agortime-Ziope in the Volta Region on Friday ordered that a role-play on political tolerance should be stopped, when it showed bias towards a political party.
Only minutes into the show being performed by the Ziope-based Nuebueke Cultural Troop the Master of Ceremonies demanded the microphone from the actors and asked them to stop.
Mr Harry Asimah, District Director of National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), said the purpose of the forum was aimed at educating the public on the right things to do in the heady days of political rivalry.
He said political opponents are not foes.
The forum, which also focused on promoting democratic citizenship, enhance elections peace, transparency and credibility in Ghana was organised by the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD), Electoral Commission, Department of Social Welfare, NCCE and the security services.
Christiana Siameh, CDD Representative said the import of the forum was to make the December 2012 General Election better success.
She said CDD is being supported by the EU and the Friedrich Norman Foundation.
Reverend Father Samuel Kuma, Priest of Ziope Catholic Church said some of the challenges for peaceful elections are bias, whipping up of sectional sentiments, such as ethnic and gender.
He called on family heads, to take up the mantle of impressing on their people to respect the laws to ensure peace during the elections.
Rev Fr Kuma said it is important that people respect the rights of others.
Mr Jonathan Okine, District Director of the EC, warned that anybody, including electoral officers and party agents could fall foul of the electoral laws and be prosecuted.
Mr Felix Toya, Deputy Superintendent of the Police, Agortime-Kpetoe District Police Commander said the security services had well-rehearsed procedures to police the polls to make it very successful.
He said defacing of party paraphernalia and use of profane language and taunting of political rivals are offences.
Yexoese Caretakers Group, a drama and dancing group performed a drama piece depicting the dangers of election violence to the admiration of the audience including Unit Committee members, youth and church groups, community leaders and chiefs.