7 December 2012

Ghana: Heavy Human Traffic At Aflao Border

Large numbers of Ghanaians sojourning in Togo, Benin and Nigeria have started arriving in Aflao, en-route their hometowns to participate in the Friday December 7 General Elections.

Others were said to be coming by sea to places mainly in the Greater Accra Region.

Ghana border officials confirmed the arrivals to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on Wednesday.

Some of the home-comers told the GNA at the Ghana Private Road Transport Union terminal that they were arriving in good time, in case the Togolese authorities decide to close their side of the frontier, as happened in the 2008 elections, resulting in them not being able to vote.

They said the move was also to avoid harassment from both the Togolese and Ghanaian frontier officials, who in 2008 exploited their late arrivals.

Some of the home-comers, mainly traders, shoe shine boys, with majority of them being fishermen and fishmongers, said they were heading for the Greater Accra, Volta, Central, Eastern and Western and Brong-Ahafo regions.

Mr. Dorkutso Dzabaku, travelling in the company of seven other fishermen from Cotonou in Benin, said they were going to places in the Dangme-East District, adding that his wife and six others left a day earlier, alongside other groups.

Paa Kwesi Onyame, in the company of two others also from Benin, said they were going to Mankessim in the Central Region, while one Kwabena Okyere, a shoeshine returning from Nigeria, said he was heading for Kumasi.

The largest group of returnees, including Lome-based head porters, was heading for places in the Volta Region.

In the 2008 elections, hundreds of Ghanaians returning from these countries were apprehended and detained for hours and days by both the Ghana and Togolese security personnel, as they attempted to enter the country through unapproved routes to take part in the elections.

Meanwhile, political parties, on Wednesday, intensified their campaigns in Aflao, using public address systems mounted on party vans.

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