A peaceful demonstration by the Manso Nkwanta-Abore Drivers Union of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union, nearly turned violent when the irate demonstrators attempted to burn tyres in the office of the District Chief Executive (DCE).
It was the timely intervention of the police that thwarted the actions of the demonstrators who resorted to burning the tyres on the premises and in the middle of the road in front of the Amansie West District Assembly.
One of the demonstrators, who was holding a lorry tyre, woods and some inflammable substance, forced his way through the crowd to enter the main gate leading to the offices of the DCE, but the police were quick to prevent him.
That was after the demonstrators had learnt that the DCE, Nii Lartey Ollenu, was not in the office to receive their petition accusing him of deliberately dodging them, because he was told of the demonstration to protest against the deplorable roads in the area.
Tuesday’s almost six-hour demonstration saw the drivers, blocking the main roads leading to Anwiankwanta in the Amansie East of Ashanti, thus causing heavy traffic leaving passengers very stranded.
Wearing red armbands, they carried placards some of which read “Manso is part of Ghana, we need good roads”, Nana Akufo-Addo fix our roads”, “No road, no vote in 2024”.
The roads were blocked at Kwabena Nkwanta, Sarfokrom, Omanadwaaye Yawhiemekrom.
At the Manso Nkwanta District Assembly where they sent their petition, the demonstrators burnt tyres in the middle of the road and on the premises of the Assembly.
The District Chief Executive was not in the office which saw the Deputy District Coordinator, Obeng Afful, receiving the petition on his behalf.
The petition, jointly signed by the Union’s Chairman, Benjamin Yaw Frimpong and Secretary, Kwame Boateng, was copied the Member of Parliament for the area, Ashanti Regional Minister, Highways Director and Paramount Chief of the traditional area.
Part of the petition stated that potholes, uneven surfaces and water logging have become a common sight making it difficult for navigation through the area.
“This is not only posing a risk to residents, passengers and drivers alone but almost hampers the overall development of the district,” it stated.
The chief of Manso Mim, Nana Otua Mensah Ababio, who bumped into the demonstrators, used the occasion to appeal to the authorities to fix the road.
Meanwhile, two days after the demonstration, the Assembly on Wednesday, had an urgent meeting with the leadership of the various transport unions who staged the demonstration.
Present at the meeting were Mr Ollenu Alfred Atimba, Amansie West District Transport Officer; Johnson Appiah, District Finance Officer; Coordinating Director for the district, Fordjour Timothy; Mr Samuel Ackom, District Police Commander.
Meeting the assembly were executives of 13 transport unions including GPRTU, PROTOA, Redeemer, Concern, Cooperative, Commercial among others.
At the meeting, spokesperson for all the transport unions, Benjamin Frimpong, mentioned roads at communities including Antoakrom, Akropong, Mmem Nkwanta, Yawkrom, Manso Nkwanta as the ones that were severely bad.
FROM KINGSLEY E.HOPE, MANSO NKWANTA