Labadi lands, the military taking over news reports have been with us for years now. In November 2016 for instance, scores of angry youth domiciled at Labadi in the Greater Accra Region, poured out onto the streets on Tuesday morning to demonstrate against the Military. The youth, who call themselves the Coalition of La Youth Association, were accusing the military of forcefully taking over some of their lands.
Clad in red, the youth, some of whom held placards with messages to express their grievances, marched through some streets in the area amidst chanting. Jeffery Tetteh, Secretary of the Association, told Citi News then that, the military had gone beyond the boundaries of the lands given to them, and is now attempting to take over more lands in the area. “The military is trying to take over our properties in La. They’ve gone beyond the lands we gave to them,” he had said, as he asserted that, the said previous meetings with the military to express their frustration at the development, have not yielded positive results and had called on government to intervene and help them save their lands from further encroachment.
Well, the unfortunate happened this time around, as today, in another of these several demonstrations, they met the brunt of some military men and many of the demonstrators had to run for cover, with some and even journalist beating to pulp, as the soldiers present, won’t countenance the behaviour of the demonstrators.
This is how it happened, after several notices of demonstration planned by the group within the La Traditional Council, the Coalition of La Associations, and calls by the police for them to suspend the demonstration, they defied the orders of the police to suspend their intended demonstration and soldiers on site, ended up beating and chasing away demonstrators protesting the alleged encroachment of the military on La Stool lands with some of the media personnel present, also beaten and manhandled.
Addressing the media ahead of the demonstration, a spokesperson for the group, Jeffrey Tetteh (who led the demonstration in 2016) had said they will not be deterred by the presence of the police to seek the release of the annexed lands by the military. “We are willing because our forefathers laid down their lives and they shed their blood to regain this land for us. It is our time to also gain the land and bequeath to those generations after us.” he had said.
Most recently, they raised concerns over what they described as wanton annexation and continuous encroachment of their lands by the military, contrary to arrangements in place to release their lands to them. After a recent tour by members of the La Traditional Council, the Trustees of the East Dadekotopon Development Trust, and the Coalition of Associations in La (COLA) to see for themselves activities of the military on the lands, they pledged their resolve to see to it that the right thing is done.
They explained that it was pronounced at the end of the negotiations in November 2020 in the presence of the military and senior officials of the Lands Commission that parts of the lands should be released to the La Stool adding that the parts required by the military should be acquired through due process.
PICS: Citifmonline and Myjoyonline
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