Five suspected macho men were arrested yesterday by the police at the Datus Preparatory School polling station in the Tema Central constituency for going to the polling station, when they are not registered voters in the polling station. They could also not properly explain to the police why they were at the polling station.

The men were reported to have returned to the polling station after the police had driven them away, following complaints by an observer who suspected the men to have come with bad intention, as they were not neighbors of the community, checks revealed.

According to an eye witness, the five men were initially asked by the police to leave the polling station, but they came back to threaten the one who reported them to the police, resulting in their arrest.

Meanwhile, the presiding officer, Bright Abutiate, speaking to The Chronicle, confirmed the incident but swiftly added that it “happened outside so I can’t give any detail about it.”

The incident made most of the voters who were in the queue disorganized, but it took some volunteers to tell them to go back and vote.

Also, the police, trying to calm the situation, used canes to whip the people who had gathered around the van of the police, to take shots of the arrested men.

The Tema Central constituency has Mr. Kofi Brako as the New Patriotic Party candidate, with Ebi Bright of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

Meanwhile, some voters at the Riis Memorial School Annex polling station in the Ablekuma West Constituency in the Greater Accra Region had been disenfranchised through no fault of theirs. Their names could not be traced in the register, when they went to the polling station to cast their ballots.

One of the voters, who gave her name as Naomi, angrily said: “I have just been told that my name is in a certain yellow book so I cannot vote. I can't understand the meaning of this… I have been voting at this very center since 1992, Jerry Rawlings time. Why are they now saying my name is no longer in the register? This is unfair treatment.”

Meanwhile, the presiding officer, Ernest Frimpong, indicated that they (polling officers) are under instruction not allow anyone whose  name is on the exceptional register to vote.

However, he couldn't explain why some peoples' names were missing from the main register.

Though this incident nearly led to a misunderstanding between the polling officers and the disfranchised voters, the entire electoral process can be described as transparent and peaceful, as the exercise started on time.

Aside the Riis Memorial School Annex, which experienced the above problem, other polling centers that this reporter visited in the Ablekuma West, South and Central, were virtually calm, with the security officers having no issue with the voters.

The situation, however, was a little different at James Town in the Odododioodioo Constituency which was invaded by both the military and police. The heavy security presence at James town was however not surprising because the area had been identified by the police as hotspot or flashpoint.

There were also some insightful sights where over enthusiastic voters kissed the ballot papers before dropping them into the ballot box.

Ghanaian chronicle