Bro Sekou Mwanza Nkrumah and several members of the widely respected All-African People’s Revolutionary Party (UK chapter), its youth wing AJAMU, The Convention Peoples Party and the Pan-African Improvement Organization were arrested in Accra following a mass demonstration against NATO’s invasion in Libya.
The protest which was held on 21 September congregated at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra and marched towards the US Embassy at Cantonments.
It was timed to coincide with the 102nd birthday of the great Pan Africanist leader, Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah which has been designated a public holiday (21 September) by President Atta Mills’ government in recognition of Nkrumah’s role in liberating Ghana from imperialism.
The police claimed to have adequately served the group with a court injunction blocking the protest but the demonstrators deny knowledge of having been served any such order.
The Ghana News Agency reports;
“[W]hen the demonstrators reached a junction near Ghana Broadcasting Corporation at Kanda, a team of Police personnel from the Greater Accra Regional Police Command met them and showed a Prohibition Order from an Accra Circuit Court prohibiting the demonstration and asked them to stop.
The demonstrators refused to acknowledge and obey the court’s order and started heckling the Police, while some of them continued demonstrating, a situation which made the police to call for reinforcement leading to the arrest of the 24.”
Those arrested were taken to the Greater Accra Regional Police Headquarters and met with the Rose Bio Atinga, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) where the leaders of the Coalition again refused to agree to their request to reschedule the demonstration in order not to clash with other activities taking in Accra.
A court order, dated September 16, was produced stating: “The organisation calling itself US/NATO Hands Off Libya and Hands Off Africa Coalition are hereby prohibited from demonstrating on September 21... It is further ordered that the intended demonstration could come on at a later date when police have been notified.”
Moral Leadership: Dr Kwame Nkrumah and Dr Martin Luther King
ACCRA 25 protesters held overnight
A police spokesperson has subsequently stated that the arrested protesters would be processed in court on 22 September and charged with “unlawful assembly” and “acts that tend to disrupt the peace of the nation”.
Bro Sekou Mwanza Nkrumah, one of the leaders of the demonstrators questioned the moral validity of the Ghanaian government to suppress their human right to freedom of expression in defence of US policy.
The All-African People’s Revolutionary Party have issued a statement that reads;
"The memory of Kwame Nkrumah is tainted today by the actions of the police force of Ghana instructed by the U.S. Embassy. What justification does the U.S. Embassy have for orchestrating the arrest of these Africans who were participating in a peaceful march that will benefit Africa and Ghana? Although the Ghanaian government is supporting the NATO invasion, the majority of Ghanaian citizens fully support the people of Libya and are among many African voices that are calling for the immediate halt of this invasion...
We demand that our comrades in the All-African People’s Revolutionary Party, the Pan-African Improvement Organization and the Conventions Peoples Party and other demonstrators be released immediately!! Release and absolve the ACCRA 25 of all charges immediately!!!"
The arrested protesters have since had caution statements taken and been released on bail.
External LinksTwenty-four people arrested for allegedly embarking on illegal demonstrationU.S.-NATO Hands Off Libya! Hands Off Africa! Coalition Marchers arrested in Ghana on Kwame Nkrumah’s Birthday!!Dr Kwame Nkrumahs 102nd birthday to serve as spring board for Hands OFF Libya, Hands off Africa Demonstration24 Arrested Over Gaddafi DemoGhana honours Nkwame Nkrumah
The All-African People’s Revolutionary Party
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