THOUSANDS of young men and women took part in the three-day #OccupyJulorbiHouse protest organized by Democracy Hub in Accra.
Their demands for government to fix the economic malaise and fight corruption was met with the illegal arrest of 49 protesters on Day 1 (September 21).
Even though all 49, illegally detained for over 12 hours were later released on bail, the events of that day will set the tone for the remaining two days as protesters defied heavy rains, faced riot police face-to-face and blocked a major road artery crippling vehicular movement.
Democracy Hub planned for the protests months back and had notified the police of same, not even the ‘unserved injunction’ of September 20 will deter them so they marched on.
Over the three-day period, scores of young people on ground and online from all walks of life coalesced to make their views known short of getting to their intended location of the Jubilee House, renamed Julorbi House, organizers called the protest a success.
The Soireenews.com has picked out five people who became the face of the protest for different reasons.
Small boys facing riot police:
A picture captured in Accra but which travelled to the office of Reuters News Agency in London before hitting Ghana’s social media space and instantly going viral.
The photo: A long shot of a young boy in rubber slippers wearing shorts with his left hand up gesturing towards the police barricade meters away from him.
It has been shared severally by individuals and by #FixTheCountry group as a symbol of the resistance and the determination to fight on and push further the boundaries of demand for accountability and good governance from the political elite and their enablers, the police.
Bridget Otoo of Metro TV
The newscaster joined the protest at the Accra Regional Headquarters where 49 illegally arrested protesters had been sent before being split in groups to stations across the capital.
A video of Bridget being shoved with others by plain clothed officers to the point f having her dress ripped made her a focal point f sort, add that to her relentless online campaign and her fuming husband’s showing when he heard what happened to her.
She would join Day 2 and 3 of the protests despite the incidents of Day 1.
Justice Srem Sai
Together with other lawyers, the police were forced to play ball and grant bail to all illegally arrested persons on Day 1.
Whiles at it, this lawyer kept updating the public with critical information on legal processes being taken on the spot and plans for future action in the interest of the protesters and possible action against the police.
Olele Salvador, a journalist cum activist, did on ground and online reporting that made him a reference point for many people seeking timely information on the protests.
He followed arrested compatriots around police stations, providing timely updates, he joined the protests and provided nuanced content and also coordinated the provision of food and drinks.
Oliver Barker-Vormawor is a lawyer, activist, PhD researcher and leader of Democracy hub.