Dr George Akuffo Dampare, Inspector General of Police (IGP), says the National Elections Security Task Force is firming up security arrangements for the upcoming District and National Elections.
The 2023 District Level Elections (DLE), barring any last-minute hitches, will be held on December 19, 2023, allowing eligible voters to elect Assembly Members to represent their respective electoral areas in the various Metropolitan, Municipal, and District Assemblies (MMDAs), as well as five Unit Committee Members for each electoral area.
The IGP said the upcoming district-level elections was crucial, such that there was the need to consult the Ghana Armed Forces, Ghana Immigration Service, Ghana Prisons, Ghana Fire Service, and other relevant security agencies to ensure security at all levels.
Dr Dampare said this during a National Elections Security Task Force meeting held in Accra on Tuesday.
The meeting saw various security agencies represented, where they all expressed readiness for the DLE, which would also serve as a “dress rehearsal” for the 2024 Presidential and Parliamentary Elections.
The IGP said the task force had become an integral part of the election processes and democratic practices.
He said the Police Service with all the relevant security agencies had decided not to take anything for granted, assuring Ghanaians of peaceful elections at both the District and National levels.
“We have only one Ghana, and we will sit collectively as professionals and as patriotic citizens to do whatever it takes to continue to let peace reign, and we will not compromise on this,” the IGP added.
Mrs Jean Mensah, the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, said the quest for power in current times had become fierce, adding that nobody or nothing would be spared in the quest to attain that power.
“Indeed, in a bid to capture power, our politicians and their supporters use all manner of methods to achieve their goals, in the wake of this, our security and safety are not spared, hence the need for security,” she stated.
She said one major challenge faced during elections was the abuse of social media to disseminate fake news around elections by “faceless individuals” for the sole purpose of causing disaffection for institutions such as the Commission in promoting unrest.
The Chairperson said the Commission was confident that the Cyber Security wing of the Police would be up to task and would deal with those situations timely.
“We trust that in their effort to do this, those behind the spread of fake news will be brought to the books and dealt with,” she said.
Mrs Mensah said the Commission looked forward to working closely with the Task Force and key stakeholders to ensure that elections in Ghana, particularly the upcoming district assembly election and the national elections were credible, transparent, and peaceful.
Vice Admiral Seth Amoama, Chief of Defence Staff, said from all indications, next year’s national elections would be a crucial one, and that as custodians of national security, the Armed Forces was ready to ensure peaceful elections as always done.
The Chief of Defence Staff said the Armed Forces was committed to their Constitutional mandate and duty to protect the country and prevent any aggression both internally and externally.
“For the elections, we may not be in the upfront of the election duties, but we will be strongly in the background, ever ready and ever prepared to support the Police Service and other Security Services…,” he added.