Hotel Demo: Protesters, Police Clash

The intended peaceful ‘Hands Off Our Hotels Demonstration’ led by Member of Parliament for North Tongu Constituency, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa against the sale of major hotels owned by the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) erupted into a clash between protesters and police personnel.
This was after the protesters who had earlier agreed to halt their march at the Christ the King School, where the group’s leadership would present the petition to the President, began agitating thereby forcing their way through to the Jubilee House, which was met with some level of resistance by the police personnel.
The police immediately raised barricades to halt their march, but the protesters began pulling them apart and started pelting the officers with stones.
The police were forced to use water cannons and tear gas to disperse the crowd that had become rowdy and to restore calm.
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa told the media that a brief scuffle ensued that led to the police using water cannons and tear gas, resulting in some of the protesters being rushed to the 37 Military Hospital for medical attention.
“Why fire tear gas? As we speak now, they have rushed some people to the hospital and they should pray that there are no casualties,” Ablakwa said.
Meanwhile, Deputy Chief of Staff Emmanuel Adumua-Bossman received the petition, assuring the protesters that the government would address the concerns as stated in the petition.
“We are delighted to receive your petition because it is part of our democratic rights enshrined in Chapter 5 of our Constitution. We are also grateful that this demonstration has taken place without any negative outcomes.
“We want to keep the spirit of democracy. I’m receiving this on behalf of the President and I assure you that I will submit it to be looked into for the appropriate measures to be taken,” he stated.
The hotels at the centre of the controversy include Labadi Beach Hotel, La Palm Royal Beach Resort, Elmina Beach Resort, Ridge Royal Hotel, and Busua Beach Resort.
The protesters converged at the Labadi Beach Hotel and concluded at Christ the King School, where leadership submitted their petition.


BY Prince Fiifi Yorke