Police secure court order to stop #FixTheCountry demo
The Ghana Police Service has secured a court order to stop the planned #FixTheCountry protest slated for Sunday, May 9, 2021.
The High Court presided by Justice Ruby Aryeetey issued a Restraining Order against conveners on Thursday.
The judge said until the restriction on public gathering has been lifted, nobody could hold any demonstration.
Failure to abide by the set rule would amount to breaching the Public Order Act.
The directive comes on the back of a group of unhappy Ghanaians serving notice of a planned demonstration against economic hardships.
The protests, which started on social media with the #Fixthecountrynow, are expected to intensify on the streets.
Social media users poured out on Twitter to vent their frustrations after the announcement of price hikes in fuel and telecommunication services.
The price increase is happening at a time of frequent power cuts with an expected power rationing in the coming days.
Other concerns highlighted include unemployment, dilapidated health system, high accommodation rate, poor road networks, and general hardships.
Details of the letter informing police of intended protest
In a letter addressed to the police on the intended demonstration, the group said they are embarking on the action “on the back of a string of consistently broken promises by successive governments”.
They are embarking on the protests “in the exercise of our democratic rights as citizens to express our frustration over perennial governmental incompetence, refusal and/or inability to fix the country”.
The notice said the organizers were “committed to improving the substance of governance in this country by ensuring that the ordinary voices of Ghanaians provide a mechanism to hold elected officials accountable”.
“There comes a point where enough is enough. Just fix the country!!!”
The group indicated that they do not intend to deliver a petition to the Presidency.
They plan to assemble at Independence Square at 8:30 am for the march to commence at 9:30 am then disperse at 37 Maxmart.
The march will proceed peacefully, and at a socially distanced pace from the Blackstar Independence Square Station, the organizers assured.
From Independence Square, the group will continue along the 28th February Road, then join the Atta Mills High Street; then down Graphic Road towards the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange, using Dr. Busia Highway, and then return on Dr. Busia Highway to meet Ring Road West Road.
They plan to continue on that street through Ring Road central, Odoi Kwao Loop, Hilla Limann Highway, Sunyani Avenue, Kanda Link, President Drive, Liberation Road, and back to 37 Maxmart where the group will disperse.
‘As the country makes efforts to prevent a third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, organizes have assured strict adherence to protocols outlined by the Ghana Health Service (GHS)’ part of the statement read.
Why May 9th
The group chose May 9th because “it captures the restless spirit of over 126 Ghanaians who lost their lives in the May 9th Accra Sports Stadium Disaster due to institutionalized incompetence and disregard for Ghanaian lives”.
Additionally, the protest is aimed at commemorating the 26th Anniversary of the Kume Preko Demonstration of May 11th, 1995.
“Thus, the event draws inspiration from the undying culture of protest and dissent that has forged our democracy, and which Kume Preko has become a synonym for in our collective memory.
Kume Preko was the name given to an anti-government demonstration that occurred in Ghana in 1995, led by Charles Wereko Brobbey.
The protest took place in opposition to the Value Added Tax (VAT) initiative which was introduced under the Jerry John Rawlings administration.
It is said to have been one of the biggest protests ever organized in the country, with an estimated 100,000 people participating.
The demonstration was initially billed as a peaceful protest but quickly became violent when unidentified assailants shot live bullets into the crowd resulting in the deaths of a few protestors.