Students of the Ghana School of Law believe the Ghana Police Service “had murderous intents towards us”.
They bared their hearts after their demonstration to call for reforms in the country’s legal education was scuttled by Police. The Police chased them and fired rubber bullets and hot water at the demonstrators causing many of the students to sustain injuries. Some eventually sought refuge in the Canadian Embassy where they left their petition.
The students embarked on the protest after many of them failed the schools entrance exams. Of the nearly 1,820 prospective students, only 128 reportedly passed the entrance examination.
Philemon Laar, one of the leaders of the demonstration expressed grave disappointment at the action of the Ghana Police Service, insisting that they operated within the laws of the country and deserved to be protected instead of being attacked.
He also lashed out at the President for denying them the opportunity to present their petition to him or anyone assigned by him. He was particularly sad because the President is hailed as a human rights champion who they expected to understand their plight better than many others.
Mr. Laar, who spoke to Bernard Buachi of www.rawgist.com hinted that they are not going to be silenced easily. He was glad over the support they received from various student bodies as well as activist groups.
Meanwhile, President of the Ghana School of Law Students’ Representative Council (SRC), Jonathan Alua, has responded to claims by the Ghana Police Service that protestors did not follow formalities prior to their demonstration Monday.
He maintains that all procedures in accordance with the law were followed by students before setting out on the street to march to the Jubilee House.
He was reacting to a statement by the police alleging that demonstrators did not furnish them with a five-day notice, per the law, to the planned date to present their petition at the Jubilee House.
Parts of the statement from the service read, “Police has therefore advised the citizenry that though they had the right to demonstrate, they must do so in accordance with the law. That required potential demonstrators to furnish the Police with a notice at least five days to the planned date (which was not observed in this instance).”
The SRC president however says the assertion of the police is shocking as the representatives of the students gave the police a ten-day notice instead of the five.
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