The Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) has rejected claims of ethnic targeting in its military deployment to the Banda District in the Bono Region.
The Adontenhene of Bongase Community in the Banda District of the Bono Region, Nana Issah Yakubu has criticized the military deployed to the area, accusing them of intimidating residents participating in the ongoing voter registration exercise.
Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress, John Dramani Mahama, had also made similar claims.
He condemned what he called the “discriminatory” use of military personnel by President Akufo-Addo to disenfranchise Ewes and other non-Akans.
But a statement issued by GAF said: “No specific ethnic group was targeted in this regard.”
GAF also explained that the deployment forms part of an agreement reached by officials of both the governing New Patriotic Party and the NDC as well as the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) on the back of disturbances that resulted in the death of one person in the Banda district.
“The Military wishes to state that on 30th July 2020, the Bono Regional Security Council met representatives of the two main political parties – NPP and NDC – to deliberate on the peaceful conduct of the registration exercise. This was in the wake of the disturbances that resulted in the unfortunate demise of one person.”
“The Agreement signed by Mr. Joe Danquah (NPP) and Hon Ahmed Ibrahim (NDC MP – Banda) and witnessed by the Hon Regional Minister stated as follows: ‘We the undersigned agreed today 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 Elections in December 2020,” the statement added.
Soldiers intimidating us – Banda Chief
The Adontenhene of Bongase had claimed that “since the commencement of the voter registration exercise, soldiers have taken over our town. Some of them have canes with them. The soldiers are intimidating young people here”.
Nana Yakubu also noted that these happenings are preventing some fisherfolk from participating in the on-going registration exercise in the community thus generating tension in the town.
He made the comment when the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress, Johnson Asiedu Nketia visited the area.