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23.02.2006 Crime & Punishment

Ten Taxi driver arrested in Sunyani for rioting

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Sunyani (B/A) Feb. 23, GNA - Ten taxi drivers in Sunyani are helping the police in investigations into their riotous behaviour on Thursday morning during which they barricaded some principal streets in the regional capital, impeding the smooth flow of traffic and the movement of people.

Assistant Commissioner of Police Kweku Ayensu Opare-Addo, Brong-Ahafo Regional Police Commander, told the Ghana News Agency that the drivers who had been placed in custody were arrested for unlawfully assembling on the principal streets and creating chaos and confusion. He said they would help in investigations into the circumstances leading to their confrontation with police personnel following the announcement of new lorry fares by the Municipal Assembly. The Assembly came out with the new fares in consultation with transport organizations in Sunyani.

The Regional Police Commander said he had to dispatch a team of policemen in the early hours of Thursday morning to areas where the drivers were rioting, after receiving information that they had erected barricades and were burning tyres on the Penkwase, Rex cinema and Fiapre roads in protest against the fares.

He described the drivers' action as "unlawful" as it hindered the free movement of vehicles, workers and commuters who were left stranded at most lorry stations.

ACP Opare-Addo said the police had to use force to drive away the drivers but they would not budge as some of them went to the extent of pelting some members of the public with stones. No casualties were reported during the confrontation but the Regional Commander appealed to members of the public to be law-abiding since they would not be spared if they acted contrary to the law.

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