The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has thrown his support behind the #Fixthecountry protests.
He believes citizens should not be gagged for demanding changes that would develop the country.
He said the youth have every right to protest against poor living conditions and must never be denied that right.
“I wish to commend the youth, both Muslims and Christians, who are demanding a lot more pragmatic measures from the leadership of our country to fix the numerous challenges that confront us at the moment,” he said.
Therefore, he called on the government to acknowledge the rights of individuals to assemble and demonstrate.
“It is obvious that the majority of the concerns expressed by the Fix Ghana Movement have existed since our independence. However, it is also true that these challenges have become more pronounced in today’s Ghana.”
“Our country is failing, and we must work together in a peaceful approach to avoid recourse to violence. A peaceful approach includes acknowledging the rights of individuals to assemble and to demonstrate without any subterfuge calculated at denying the youth of that right.
“The youth seeking to protest are not misguided law-breakers. They are patriots and citizens, citizens in the sense that the President called for in his first inaugural address,” he said in his Eid ul-Fitr message.
The increment happened at a time of frequent power cuts.
Other concerns highlighted include unemployment, dilapidated health system, high accommodation rate, poor road networks, and general hardships.
They subsequently planned a demonstration against the economic hardships on May 9.
But the Ghana Police Service secured an injunction against the angry youth.
Failure to abide by the set rule would amount to breaching the Public Order Act.
On the scheduled day of the demonstration, convenors entreated disgruntled citizens to vent their anger on social media.
Police dispatched about 20 crowd control vehicles to the Independence Square, where protesters were scheduled to converge.
Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms have been flooded with images and videos of people calling on the government to act.
A new #FixMotherGhana chosen to reflect the commemoration of Mother’s Day and to draw the attention of societal problems was trending and had more than 123, 000 tweets by the time the Finance Minister finished addressing the press conference.
Ofori-Atta Outlines 5 Measures To #FixGhanaNow As Protests Intensify
Meanwhile, the government has responded by announcing interventions to be implemented to address the situation.
Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has listed five areas to be tackled as he called on Ghanaians to assist the government in fixing the country’s problems.
“In the coming days, we will move swiftly to address some of the issues that the hashtag fix the economy have raised,” he said at a press briefing on Sunday, May 9.
He said he was working with the Minister of Water and Sanitation to immediately ensure potable water to areas with felt need, especially in the most urban areas.
The Finance Minister revealed that he was working with the Ministers of Roads and Highways, Transport, and Interior to address congestion along the major highways.
According to him, the government was fast-tracking the implementation of the US$200million Jobs and Skills Programme to enhance job creation significantly.
This intervention is designed to facilitate new and expanded private sector businesses to employ a lot more people.
“This we believe is a more sustainable way to rebuild this economy instead of expanding Government employment schemes,” he explained.
He said from May, the government is expected to roll out over eight additional interventions under the Ghana CARES “Obataanpa” programme.
These will be in the Health, Agriculture, Tourism, Trade, Digitization, Science and technology, Housing and financial services.
By the end of July, they hope to establish a new Development Bank capitalized at over $500m to provide long-term wholesale financing to the private sector through Commercial banks.
This is aimed at supporting SMEs to create jobs for the youth.
He acknowledged that the people of Ghana had given the government a mandate to get things done.
“For us as a government, this is a clarion call for a national conversation on the shared burden to renew the social contract of our democracy. At its minimum, we should ensure social justice and social mobility for most Ghanaians.
“At our best, we should open for all Ghanaians an economic system under which each citizen shall be guaranteed the opportunity to show the best in him or her”.
He pledged his commitment “to work to fix those structures that will set Ghana on this path”.
“So let us Rise Up and Build together #Letsfixthistogether,” he concluded.