Monday demo over deaths on highway looms

Resident of Adentan, an Accra suburb, have vowed to continue protests over delay in the completion of footridges linked to staggering fatalities on the Madina-Adentan highway.

This is despite the latest government assurance to begin work on the footbridges next week following spontaneous protest Thursday.

That protest was triggered by another fatality on the Adentan highway late afternoon. According to them, Monday’s demonstration will be carefully planned on a larger scale.

This, they say will send a clear message to the authorities about the gravity of the situation the are drawing attention to. 

A taxi on top speed on the six-lane highway knocked and killed a first-year student of the West Africa Senior High School which is located along the stretch.

That was the 194th death in 2018 on that stretch alone. The residents had had enough and their anger developed into a spontaneous demonstration.

Irate youth burned tyres which sent thick dark clouds of smoke into the skies. They chanted “no more deaths, no more deaths, no more deaths” and demanded immediate completion of the footbridges on the roads.

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In response, the government decided to deploy heavily armed policemen to the rioting scene to quell the anger of the residents.

The cops fired warning shots into the crowd along with tear gas to disperse the angry mob.

Blood oozed from the head of a protester in a video footage while a mother and her son in a public transport were hit by stray bullets.

More than 12 hours after the episode, the Transport, Roads and Highways and Interior Ministries and deployed traffic cops to the stretch to help pedestrians cross the roads.

The residents have however had enough, and will not be dissuaded by the late response of the authorities.

“This is not going to stop us, we are just waiting for them to leave and we will block the roads again. Yesterday’s demonstration was unplanned, the real thing is happening on Monday and they will see,” an infuriated resident told Joy News Friday morning.

Meanwhile, the deputy Information Minister Pius Enam Hadzide says the erstwhile government is to blame, a position that attracted severe backlash.

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