PEOPLE living in the Atosale/Azaasi electoral area in the Kassena/Nankana East district of the Upper East region have sent an SOS to the Electoral Commission (EC) and national security asking them to start the biometric voters? registration exercise in the area.
With less than two weeks to go for the exercise to end, the residents have not had the opportunity to register following the sacking of registration officials from the area by the Akurugu-Daboo family.
The Akurugu family in the community stopped the registration in the area because the name of the electoral area was changed by an Act of Parliament from Akurugu-Daboo to Atosale/Azaasi against their wish.
A press statement issued by Nankana residents in Sunyani said the entire community has been prevented from taking part in national and local elections since 2010 by the Akurugu family in protest against the change of name.
According to spokesperson for the group, Maxwell Awekeya Nyaaba, some top officials in the district have created the erroneous impression that there is unrest in the community, thereby wrongly advising security agencies and the EC to suspend all elections in the area.
He said the area has no assembly member since they were prevented from taking part in the last district assembly elections.
?We want to alert the security agencies to call the Akurugu family and its sponsors to order because twice, the whole community of Atosale/Azaasi has been taken to ransom by the same Akurugu family.?
?The people were denied the right to elect their assembly member in 2010 and again, the community is being denied the right to participate in the ongoing biometric voter registration exercise by the same family,? the statement lamented.
The statement, endorsed by the elders of the electoral area, called on the EC and the security agencies to halt what they described as the nefarious activities of the Akurugu family and allow the people of Atosale/Azaasi electoral area to participate in all national electoral exercises without further hindrance.
Mr. Nyaaba explained to DAILY GUIDE that on the morning of March 24 when the registration commenced, the community was shocked and disappointed when the electoral officials upon advice from the DCE, allegedly changed the registration centre from the nursery school to the Akurugu-Daboo family area without their knowledge only for them to be sacked.
He dismissed media reports suggesting the people of Akurugu-Daboo had boycotted the exercise saying it is only one family in the area that is resisting the registration exercise.
?We the elders and people of Atosale/Azaasi electoral area wish to state categorically that there is no electoral area called Akurugu-Daboo in the Kassena/Nankana East district as reported in the media,? the statement pointed out.