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Wassa Students Condemn EC Boss

The Wassa Amenfi East Students' Union (WAESU) in the Western Region has taken a swipe at the district electoral officer of the Electoral Commission (EC), Juliana Asante, for allegedly spitting into the face of one of their colleagues, Fredrick Kumah, student of the University of Development Studies (UDS).

According to the students, Madam Asante's behaviour was unacceptable and must be exposed and condemned by all those who value transparency, justice and stability.

In a statement issued by the union and jointly signed by Clement Taylor, Nana Sarfo Kantanka and Odame Antwi Enock, president, secretary and PRO respectively, the students vehemently condemned the purported behaviour of the district EC boss.

They demanded that the EC and its chairman, Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, should call the district EC director to order.

'We, the student body of Wassa Amenfi East are deeply shocked by the action taken by Juliana Asante against our leader, Frederick Kumah, and we call on all well-meaning Ghanaians to condemn the inhumane act,' the statement charged.

He purportedly encountered the incident when he attempted to inquire about an alleged transfer of votes in an exercise which was taking place in the EC's district office.

According to the victim, at exactly 12:30 pm Saturday, the student group received information that some people had been conveyed in an Urvan caravan vehicle from an unknown destination and were going through processes to transfer their votes at the EC's office at Wassa Akropong.

'As a major stakeholder in the promotion of peace and development in the district, I decided to find out from the EC's district office what was really happening,' he asserted.

Mr. Kumah told  DAILY GUIDE  that he went to the EC's district office at about 1:00 pm to meet about 20 non-residents of the district apparently going through the process of transferring their votes from other regions.

'When I asked who brought them – 'the foreigners' - it was disclosed that it was an NDC activist contesting for an assembly member position in one of the electoral areas. So I wondered; if it was a genuine exercise why was it being organized in secrecy?' he queried.

Kumah added that what was so strange was the fact that one of the persons who supervised the conduct of the exercise was a well-known National Democratic Congress (NDC) activist who had no official appointment with the EC.

'So I approached Madam Juliana Asante to plead for the suspension of the transfer exercise, given the questionable circumstances in which it was being conducted and the agitation it was generating, for the sake of peace and stability.'

Kumah noted that his plea did not go down well with the district director of the EC.

He said the woman got angry and started shouting at everybody and questioned why Kumah was interfering with her work.

'The woman retorted that she was not answerable to anybody and if anybody had any problem they should contact Dr. Afari-Gyan. I then told her that her outfit should have notified the public and the political parties about the exercise,' Kumah asserted.

'I told her the voters register was not her personal property but a public document and that it was my responsibility as a citizen to ensure transparency, fairness and credibility in any exercise leading to national elections.'

Kumah stated further, 'The woman got infuriated and spat on my face saying that I can't tell her what she should do. So she called the District Police Commander, DSP Isaac Kumnipa, to arrest me.'

Madam, Juliana Asante had denied the story in an interview with an Accra-based radio station.

 From Emmanuel Opoku, Takoradi

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