‘Chale Wote’ festival organisers, artist were arrested for defying Public Order Act- Police

The Greater Accra Police Command has explained the reason behind the arrest of three persons at the popular annual street art festival, ‘Chale Wote’, held at Jamestown in Accra on Saturday,  August 21, 2021.

According to the Police, not only had they ignored an invitation for a meeting prior to the event, but had also breached the Public Order Act, which categorizes this ‘Chale Wote’ event as a special event.

Two organizers of ‘Chale Wote’, Mantse Ayikwei and Nii Aryee together with an artist, Ampem Darko, were picked up by the police outside the Ussher Fort at Jamestown, whiles the virtual event was taking place inside the fort.

Speaking to Citi News on the arrest, the Public Relations Officer of the Accra Regional Police Command, DSP Juliana Obeng said “The command sighted the advert for this festival and invited the organisers for a meeting, and I am told the organisers never turned up. So yesterday [Saturday], we picked intelligence to the effect that the organizers were already preparing the place for the event. The police then moved in to arrest the three persons.”

She indicated that the three are still in police custody.

“No charges have been pressed against them yet, but they have been cautioned,” she added.

She however noted that they will not be held beyond the lawful 48 hours.

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA), had earlier announced that the 2021 edition of ‘Chale Wote’ will be a virtual event due to the upsurge in COVID-19 cases.

‘Chale Wote’ Street Art Festival is a Ghanaian-originated platform that brings together art, music, dance, and performance unto the streets.

This year’s edition of the festival marks ten (10) years of its existence since it was first launched
in 2011 to promote the appreciation of diverse forms of art in Ghana.

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