Two rampaging youth groups believed to be supporters of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) yesterday brought activities at the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) to a temporal halt as they protested over the swearing-in of some government appointees.
It took the timely intervention of the Greater Accra Regional Police Command to maintain calm nerves and to allow the swearing-in of some 36 out of the 39 appointees expected to be sworn in yesterday.
Two persons were reportedly arrested by the police for not heeding to warning shots to allow for the peaceful swearing-in ceremony.
The Ghanaian Times learnt that a closed door meeting was held by the Presiding Member and the Coordinating Director of the AMA to determine the fate of three of the appointees, who were the subject of the controversy.
The Times also gathered that the swearing-in was expected to have taken place last Friday, but had to be postponed because of some discrepancies which had to be resolved.
Numbering about 250, the groups who were coming from Odododiodo, Ablekumah South, and Central constituencies, picketed at vantage points outside and within the AMA premises, hurling insults and chanting war songs.
Their contentions were that three of the appointees did not show up in the 2016 electioneering campaign, only for them to resurface after the party had won the elections.
They, have therefore, appealed to President Akufo-Addo to as a matter of urgency revoke the appointment of the trio, respectively, from Ablekumah South, Ashiedu Keteke, and Ablekumah Central and Odododiodoo electoral areas.
When The Ghanaian Times got to the premises, there were five police vehicles and about 50 police personnel working to maintain law and order.
There were sporadic confrontations between some members of the groups with the police, as every nuance was argued hysterically.
Mr. Francis Ebo Mensah, Assemblyman for Asylum Down electoral area, Korley Klotey Constituency said the group had no right to protest against the government appointees.
He said it was the prerogative of the President to appoint 30 per cent of the assembly to augment the work of the House.
He said the names of the appointees were given to the assembly by the Greater Accra Regional Coordinating Council and wondered where the groups had the names of persons constituting the appointees.
“The controversy started way before we came here. Maybe someone might have told them some names are here, and, I don’t know how they managed to know the names coming here because it should be shrouded in secrecy. Everybody that is supposed to be here were given letters,” he said.
Mr. Mensah commended the professionalism of the police, adding that they were “very fantastic today”.
By Malik Sullemana