#FixTheCountry Convener Barker-Vormawor arrested for ‘threatening a coup’
Convener of the pressure group #FixtheCountry Campaigners, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, has been apprehended by security officials, a member of the group, Felicity Naana Nelson, said on Friday, 11 February 2022.
According to her, Mr Oliver Barker-Vormawor “arrived in Kotoka International Airport at 4 pm today, and he was whisked away by state officials”.
She added that Mr Oliver Barker-Vormawor “has been missing for the last 6 hours”.
Ms Nelson later posted on her Facebook page that the family and members of the #FixTheCountry “don’t know where he [Barker-Vormawor ] is” at the moment.
She accused security officials of wrongfully arresting Mr Barker-Vormawor without any information on his whereabouts and why he had been arrested.
Meanwhile, the #FixtheCountry Movement has called for the release of Mr Barker-Vormawor.
We demand that he is RELEASED immediately pic.twitter.com/J17S8HfmoH
— Fixthecountry (@Ghfixthecountry) February 11, 2022
An earlier statement from the group said:
“We wish to announce the disappearance of one of our conveners – Mr Oliver Mawuse Barker-Vormawor.
“Mr Barker-Vormawor left the United Kingdom this morning Friday, 11th February 2022 for Accra, Ghana, where he is scheduled to have a series of meetings with the diplomatic community.
“He arrived at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) at 4:59 pm on TAP Air Portugal flight TP 1527.
“The last time his family and lawyers heard from him was at 5:29 pm, at which point he informed them that some unidentified armed men had accosted him on his way into the arrival hall at KIA.
“All attempts by Mr Barker-Vormawor’s family and lawyers to find him since that time have been unsuccessful. The KIA Security, the KIA Immigration Office, the Airport Police Station, the National Bureau of Investigations Headquarters, and the National Security Head Office (Blue Gate) do not have any information on him.”
Mr Barker-Vormawor had been posting about a coup in a series of posts on his Facebook page following recent discussions about the proposed 1.75% Electronic Transaction Levy (E-levy).
“If this E-Levy passes after this cake bullshit, I will do the coup myself. Useless Army!” Barker-Vormawor said in one of the posts.
In another post, he said: “Okay, let’s try again. If this E-Levy still passes after this cake bullshit, then may God….Help us to resist oppressor’s rule, With all our will and might for evermore. (2x)
Useless Army. Anaa, the value is the same?”
Consequently, a section of Ghanaians who found his comments distasteful poured out on social media to call on the Ghana Police Service to arrest him.
#FixTheCountry describes itself as a non-partisan, non-aligned civic movement by Ghanaian youths for Ghana.
#FixTheCountry was birthed in 2021 via online protests after the government announced price hikes in fuel and telecommunication services.
The price increase was happening at a time of frequent power.
Other concerns highlighted by the angry social media users included high taxes, unemployment, dilapidated health system, high accommodation rate, poor road networks, and general hardships.
The group subsequently held a series of demonstrations and continued their online protests against government policies they believed were inimical to ordinary Ghanaians.
Most recently, #FixTheCountry submitted a petition to President Nana Akufo-Addo demanding the head of the EC Chairperson, Jean Mensa, over the inability of the Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe (SALL) residents to vote for a representative in parliament.
Currently, SALL, which is in the Guan District, has no representation in parliament.
In the petition, Mr Barker-Vormawor had argued that the conduct of the EC officials in the SALL matter “meets the threshold of stated misbehaviour and, or incompetence as required under Article 146 of the 1992 Constitution for the removal of these officials”.
#FixTheCountry insisted that the actions and inactions of the EC boss caused the people of SALL to lose their fundamental human rights.
There were 46 signatories to the petition, including residents of SALL.