The youth wing of the opposition Democratic Congress, NDC, is calling on the #FixTheCountry movement to join their ‘march for justice’ demonstration slated for Tuesday, July 6, 2021.
This comes after the Ghana Police Service promised to give the NDC protesters protection for the scheduled demonstration.
The police had earlier declined an invitation to provide security for the protest on the basis that COVID-19 restrictions were still in force.
But the NDC insisted on embarking on the protest, rubbishing the reasons given by the police.
The police however rescinded their earlier decision after a crunch meeting between the two parties.
Speaking on Eyewitness News, the National Youth Organiser of NDC, George Opare Addo, stated that it will grant its platform to the #FixTheCountry movement to convey their message to the government.
He also stated that the police need to look into giving the movement the chance to exercise their right to demonstrate.
“I have criticised clearly the decision of the government to prevent the #FixTheCountry movement from embarking on their constitutionally mandated right to demonstrate. I believe that with the police agreeing that they will be around to provide us security, it is time that they also look at the issues pertaining to the fix the country movement.”
“But I am asking everybody, especially members of the Fix The Country movement to join hands with the NDC. We are fighting for almost the same thing. I will speak with their leadership and tell them where they can align with our views and opinions so that they come and then whatever they want to do they can use our platform to convey their message,” he added.
But the convener for the #FixTheCountry movement, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, says although he is happy that the NDC has been allowed to demonstrate, he does believe that they necessarily have to align with their cause.
He however says any such decision would have to be discussed by the Movement.
He also questioned the decision of the police to grant the youth wing of the NDC the security to demonstrate, but could not do same for them.
“One of the things we need to be mindful of is that #FixTheCountry is not a group or an entity. When individuals speak, they speak on their own mandate, so I cannot speak for the collective, but I think we need to discuss the role of all political actors, including the government and the NDC as well, as to their engagement in the mess we find ourselves.”
“Now if they are coming forth honestly and acknowledging their role in the mess, that’s fine. But if they shift blame, then I don’t think that it aligns with the questions we are asking because we have said that the problems have been with successive governments and that puts the NDC squarely in what we think is wrong with how this country has been run for some years. So just because they have been granted the chance to protest and ours was denied doesn’t mean our interests necessarily align,” he added.
Purpose of protest
The NDC youth wing had notified the police that it will organise a street protest dubbed ‘A March for Justice’ on Tuesday, July 6, 2021, to demand justice for all persons killed or brutalised by the various security agencies in the country.
In a letter to the Inspector General of Police, the NDC youth wing said it was writing to the police in accordance with the Public Order Act (491).
But the Regional Police Command’s explanation in rejecting the group’s request referred to Section 4 of the Public Order Act 1994 (ACT 491) particularly concerning public health.
“Restrictions imposed by the Executive Instrument (EI) 395 to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic have still not been lifted”, the police stated.
This did not sit well with the youth wing as they threatened to go ahead with their planned demonstration despite the Police Service’s refusal to provide protection.
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP), James Oppong-Boanuh, subsequently requested to meet the leaders of the youth wing over their planned demonstration.