The chiefs and people of Aflao in the Volta Region have expressed disapproval of the choice of the town as the venue to commemorate the 33rd anniversary of the June 4th Uprising.
A statement issued by the chiefs and elders and signed by the Senior Divisional Chief of the Aflao Traditional Area, Torgbui Anubo, IV, said they were uncomfortable with the choice of the town as the venue for the event.
It was jointly signed by Professor Ernest Dumor, the Chairman of th Aflao Council of Elders, and Mr Christian Yevunya, the Chairman of the Aflao Youth Association.
Former President Rawlings is expected to address hundreds of faithful at the event slated for Sunday, June 3 at the Aflao Victoria Park.
The statement said the people of Aflao had placed before the government some demands backed by constitutional provision and the Local Government Act 462 of 1993, such as the creation of Aflao municipality and the provision of infrastructure in the Aflao but for more than 30 or so years no government had paid heed.
“We do not want this situation to be exploited at this moment and to make us appear as anti-government,” the statement said, adding that “as we wait patiently for the present National Democratic Congress (NDC) government to honour the promise it made to the people, we strongly believe it is inappropriate for Aflao to host such a political celebration.”
The statement further said the Aflao state gave the former president a traditional honour and title, Torgbui Awaklasu in recognition of his role in bringing democracy to Ghana and therefore expected him to use this honour to serve the state and not to “use us for political gain for his co-host”.
The statement said the Paramount Chief of the area, Torgbui Adzongaga Amenya Fiti V, was currently outside the country in connection with the forthcoming Godigbe Festival of the chiefs and people of Aflao.
In view of such situation, the statement said, “the chiefs and people feel very uncomfortable for the area to be used as a platform for staging political contest”.
“Consequently, we the chiefs and people of Aflao hereby register our disapproval of and objection to the choice of Aflao for the celebration of this year’s June 4 anniversary and strongly disassociate ourselves from the celebration and its ramifications,” it said.
The statement appealed to the security agencies to take note and accordingly withdraw any endorsement of the event taking place within the traditional area.
“We again strongly advise that the venue for the celebration be changed from Aflao to any location outside the traditional area,” it added.