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There was a violent confrontation between personnel of the Ghana Police Service and the Arise Ghana protesters on the first day of protest resulting in the use of tear gas, bullets, pepper sprays, stones and hot water by the police on the protesters, leaving many severely injured with damages to vehicles and buildings also recorded. In return, the demonstrators pelted stones at the police also resulting in injuries.
The police blocked the route of the protesters leading to the Jubilee House as they insisted on using the passage at the Ring Road to their end point. The police therefore resorted to water canons and firing of tear gas to deter the protesters from using that route and in the process causing severe injuries to the demonstrators. The deputy national youth Organizer of the opposition National Democratic Congress(NDC) who’s also a leading member of the organizers of the Arise Ghana protest Edem Agbana, bemoaned the professionalism of the police and accused them of harming “unarmed protesters”. “I think what happened is unfortunate, this is not what we bargained for. We are peaceful demonstrators, unarmed protesters sending a clear message to the government that the economy is in a mess” he said. According to him ” one reckless police said that if we don’t take care they’ll shoot at us. Some of the officers were really unprofessional ”
The Organizers of the protests cite the rising cost of living, endemic corruption, the burdensome E-levy and the Agyapa scandal amongst others as the reasons for their two-day protest against the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government. The country’s currency has seen the worst form of depreciation under the current government, coupled with a record 18-year high level of inflation of 27.6%.There are records of high levels of corruption as captured in Transparency International’s recent report as the country returned a very low rating.
The Organizers have assured the general public of their safety and called on them to turn up massively for today’s protest in order to drum home their demands from government.