#OccupyBoG demo hits Accra  …protesters demand removal of governor, two deputies

Thousands of Gha­naians yesterday hit the streets of Accra to demand the resignation of the Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr Ernest Addison and his two deputies.

According to the protesters, the governor was mismanaging the bank, resulting in unsustainable debt and bankruptcy.

They further accused the lead­ership of BoG of superintending over reckless expenditure, includ­ing the construction of the new US$250 million Bank of Ghana head office.

The Demonstrators Photo. Nii Otoe Bruce-Tagoe   .JPG
The Demonstrators Photo. Nii Otoe Bruce-Tagoe .JPG

Dubbed, #OccupyBoG, the protest was organised by the Na­tional Democratic Congress (NDC) Minority caucus in Parliament in collaboration with other pressure groups including Arise Ghana.

Clad in red and black attire and other paraphernalia, the protesters converged on the Obra Spot, where the protest was scheduled to com­mence at about 7:00am.

The protesters, which included a large population of youth and women, held placards with various inscriptions including “Addison Must Go”, “Professional Incompe­tence is a Crime”, “Stop Misusing our Money”, “Students are Suffer­ing”, “Bawumia, Give the Economy a Showdown”, and “BoG now a Printing Machine”.

Others were “Vampire Govern­ment”, “Ofori-Atta must go to jail”, “Scrap E-levy Now”, “Enough is Enough”, “We are hungry”, “Bawumia we need your lectures”, and “Save our Ghana from Col­lapse.”

There was heavy security pres­ence at the converging points and along the agreed routes for the protest.

From Obra Spot, the protesters marched towards Adabraka where a near scuffle emerged between the protesters and the police when the police restricted protesters from moving ahead of them and blocking the Adabraka high street to disallow protesters from using that stretch.

The disagreement was immedi­ately resolved by the leadership of the demonstration and the police with the National Communica­tions Officer of the NDC, Sammy Gyamfi, re-directing the protesters to a different route with the aid of a loudspeaker.

They went through the Ridge roundabout, the National Theatre traffic light, the High Court com­plex traffic light, and the Atta Mills High Street.

Throughout the demonstration, the protesters chanted patriotic songs to urge all Ghanaians to seek for good governance, intensify cor­ruption fights and accountability.

Some other protesters also took the unusual posture of either sitting or rolling their bodies on the streets while wailing and demanding for action to end corruption, misappli­cation of state resources and bad governance.

As earlier announced by the police, the road leading to the current BoG headquarters from the NLA traffic light was blocked with barricades and compelling the protesters to make a U-turn at the National Lottery Authority (NLA) traffic light and proceeded to Black Star Square to end the exercise.

At about 3:20pm, the leadership of the protesters including the Minority Leader in Parliament, Dr Cassiel Ato Forson, Mr Asiedu Nketia, Mr Sammy Gyamfi, Mr Sam George and other members of the Minority Caucus were led by police personnel to the BoG headquar­ters to present their petition to the governor.

The group, however, refused to present the petition to Wing Com­mander Kwame Asare Boateng, Director of Security, BoG in the absence of the governor.

Wing Commander Boateng said that Dr Addison was in a meeting with a team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and was therefore unavailable to receive the petition.

Dr Forson, in response, said the decision by the governor to avoid the protesters was disrespectful and vowed to return later when the governor was available for the presentation.

Earlier, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, National Chairman of the NDC, accused the governor of BoG of mismanaging the Central Bank, saying that, it was time for him and the deputies to be removed.

He said the protesters were only heading to the BoG to submit their petition to the governor, hence there was no need for the police to fight them.

“We are not going there to fight anyone. We are only taking the peti­tion to the one we have assigned to work for us but if you say that place is a security zone, then you will have to arrest all of us,” he stated.


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