General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia, has questioned the level of professionalism of military personnel deployed to maintain peace in the Banda Constituency, accusing them of not only “reeking of alcohol”, but having the demeanour of “rebels on drugs”.
According to the NDC Chief Scribe, instead of discharging their core duties as expected, the military officers are rather supporting the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Parliamentary Candidate to flout the agreement signed by the two main political parties.
It would be recalled that in the wake of disturbances that resulted in the unfortunate demise of one person in the area about a week ago, military officers were dispatched to assist other security agencies to calm matters. But these soldiers have been accused of targeting a particular group of people and denying them their rights to register.
A video of the NDC General Secretary of the NDC complaining bitterly about the presence of the military in the Banda area who had blocked the road to stop busloads of people from accessing registration centres, went viral on Sunday.
“Drunkards” & “Rebels On Drugs”
Throwing more light on the issue on Okay FM’s Ade Akye Abia Morning Show, a furious Asiedu Nketia charged at the soldiers for intimidating residents in the constituency.
“The military officers on duty have no business to stop people from taking part in the registration exercise. They can’t block the road to stop people from registering. You should see those military officers on duty smelling of alcohol; blowing ‘fuse’ when they were talking to me. They looked like rebels on drugs and you could not look into their eyes and if you don’t take care, you will get drunk talking them,” he asserted.
He claimed that Mr. Joe Danquah who is the Parliamentary Candidate for the ruling NPP is acting on his words as he is said to have stated that he will not comply with the agreement the two parties have signed to.
Meanwhile, the military high command has denied targeting any particular tribe and admonished the public to disregard any such report.
Refuting the allegations of intimidation and prevention of eligible persons in Banda from registering in the ongoing voter registration, Director of Public Relations for Ghana Armed Forces, Colonel E. Aggrey-Quashie, explained that the Military’s presence in the constituency is an agreement between both the NDC and NPP.
In a statement copied Peacefmonline.com, he pointed out that the Bono Regional Security Council on 30th July 2020 met representatives of the two main political parties-NPP and NDC- to deliberate on the peaceful conduct of the registration exercise.
It stated that the agreement was signed by Mr. Joe Danquah (NPP) and Hon Ahmed Ibrahim (NDC MP-Banda) and witnessed by the Hon Regional Minister to maintain peace in the Banda district during the remaining days of the voters’ registration exercise and after, until the end of the 2020 General election in December 2020.
The agreement further stated that “REGSEC will give the necessary security to the Banda Constituency and the entire Region, before, during, and after the process of the 7th December Election. The REGSEC and the Electoral Commission and other stakeholders should meet the Chiefs to determine the boundaries of Banda”.
“The two Parliamentary Candidates (Mr. Joe Danquah and Hon Ahmed Ibrahim MP) should stop busing people to the registration centers if indeed they were ordinary residents; they should go there on their own volition,” the agreement between.
But General Mosquito, as the NDC General Secretary is affectionately called, rubbished the statement and insisted that irrespective of the agreement not to bus people to registration centers, the “soldiers had no right to obstruct the movement of eligible Ghanaians, albeit bussed to participate in the registration exercise”.
Watch video below: