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Put your safety first – Police to journalists covering Oti referendum

Journalists covering the referendum within the Oti area have been cautioned to be extra vigilant over fears of attacks by some alleged opponents of the proposed Oti Region.

The Police gave the warning through the Volta Regional Chairman of the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA), Kafui Kanyi.

“I just received a call from the Regional Police Commander that reports from the JCC (Oti) indicating that unknown faces who are not in the company of the police could be attacked by the locals. Media practitioners from the south are therefore advised to be at Kadjebi, the collation centre and pick information from there. Thanks. Remember, safety first,” Mr. Kanyi indicated.

The Joint Consultative Committee on the creation of the Oti Region made up of some chiefs and respected citizens of the Oti Enclave and chaired by Nana Mpra Besemuna, Chief of Karachi, last Monday warned against persons opposed to the new region.

“…We have picked intelligence that the detractors of the Oti Region from southern Volta have planned to begin their anti-Oti-region activities…To foment trouble to create the impression in the minds of well-meaning Ghanaians that there are security challenges in the Oti enclave.”

“We want to warn that per the Supreme Court ruling, people who are not citizens of residents of the Oti area have no locus to come and campaign here… However, if the anti-Oti campaigners decide to come and destabilize the exercise, we cannot look on unconcerned,” Nana Mpra Besemuna told journalists amidst cheers from a youthful audience.

Voting is currently underway in parts of the country for the creation of six regions namely: Bono East, Ahafo, North East, Savanna, Western North and Oti.

The voters are simply to vote yes or no in the referendum which has generated some controversy in parts of the country.

There was agitations by some people within the Oti enclave who say they are against the creation of the new region.

But voting has begun in eight districts and four traditional areas of the proposed Oti Region.

People of all ages have queued across all 814 polling stations to exercise their civil rights in deciding whether or not there should be an Oti Region.

Voting ongoing despite heightened tension

Meanwhile, despite reports of heightened tension, it seems the voting process is going on peacefully.

Even though turnout appeared to be low as at 10:00am; some 355,373 registered Voters of the areas are expected to cast their ballots by end of the day today.

 

Source: citinewsroom

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