Heavy police presence at EC, State House ahead of planned protests

The head office of the Electoral Commission in Accra is the scene of heavy police presence with over 200 men and women, led by 20 senior police officers cordoning off the premises.

The deployment, including the Formed Police Unit (FPU) is to secure the Commission from plans by a number of groups to picket at its premises to press home calls for a new voters register for the 2016 general elections.

There are similar deployments at the Trades Union Congress and the Holy Spirit Cathedral intersections leading to the EC, as well as the State House building housing Parliament.

The police on Tuesday secured a court injunction to stop the groups, including the Alliance for Accountable Governance, Let My Vote Count, and the New Patriotic Party, which first raised concerns with the existing voters’ register and has been demanding a new one, from picketing at the EC because it posed a security threat.

The police say they expect the protesting groups to comply with the court orders to use other venues for their protest march, however they cannot afford to take chances and so have deployed officers and men to secure the places.

“We do not want any trouble at the EC and since we also do not know what may happen, we have taken the precaution to secure the place,” said Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Kwadwo Antwi Tabi, Divisional Commander of the Dansoman Police, who is also leading the deployment at the EC.

He said the deployment had been informed by misgivings expressed by the organisers of the demonstration when they were served the court injunction directing them to use other venues.

The groups also wanted to go to Parliament to present a petition to the house over their calls for a new voters register. They will do that at the Hearts of Oak training grounds near the Arts Centre.

“We will be here until the demonstration is over and we are certain all is well for us to withdraw our men and women,” ACP Antwi Tabi assured.

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  • Origin: Graphic Online