Dozens arrested as Ghanaians protest high cost of living

Protesters in Ghana. Photo Francis Kokoroko on Facebook

Protesters in Ghana. Photo Francis Kokoroko on Facebook

Dozens of people have been arrested in Ghana as protests continued in Accra for the third day over economic hardship.

Protesters, some waving placards or the Ghanaian flag, decried the high cost of living and a lack of jobs as they marched under the watch of riot police.

The gold, oil and cocoa-producing nation has been battling its worst economic crisis in a generation brought on by spiralling public debt.

“The average Ghanaian can’t afford three square meals (per day) … the government doesn’t care,” said 24-year-old unemployed protester Romeo, who like others at the demonstration was wearing a red beret.

Police blocked the road to prevent protesters approaching Jubilee House, the seat of the presidency, which organisers Democracy Hub have vowed to occupy.

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On Thursday, police said 49 people had been detained for unlawful assembly and violating the public order act on the first day of the three-day action. There was no sign of further arrests and the situation appeared calm on Saturday.

Last year, protests over soaring prices and other economic challenges led to clashes with police.

The government sealed a $3 billion, three-year loan programme with the International Monetary Fund in May, but detractors say the authorities have done too little to help those struggling to make ends meet amid the protracted downturn.

Economic growth is forecast to slow to 1.5% this year from 3.1% in 2022.

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