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I was beaten, slapped and spat on – Barker-Vormawor recounts arrest and torture

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Wed, 4 May 2022 Source:

Barker-Vormawor charged with treason felony

#FixTheCountry convener spends more than a month in detention

Tema High Court grants activist bail

Convener of #FixTheCountry Movement Oliver Mawusi Barker-Vormawor was arrested on February 11, 2022, at the Kotoka International Airport and subsequently detained for some 34 days before a Tema High Court granted him bail.

The activist who has been sharing his arrest experience says he was tortured by men believed to be part of the state security apparatus prior to his detention at the Ashaiman Police Station.

In an interview on Unprovoked, a YouTube channel, Barker-Vormawor said the people who arrested him subjected him to beatings and slaps, and went as far as depositing spits on him. He described the acts as torture.

"I arrived in this country around 5.00 pm on Friday, February 11; I was detained by the Immigration Service for about 30 minutes; persons in the military, armed to the teeth, and persons in plainclothes - non were in police uniforms - came to pick me up at the airport [Kotoka International Airport] for over 5 hours, I was beaten up, [they] stepped on me, spat on me; I consider those to be torture," he stated.

On his journey to detention after being arrested, the activist said all his efforts to seek answers from his abusers on where they were taking him rather attracted further assault.

Based on the circumstance, he said he feared that day would be his last on earth as he concluded that he was being taken away to be killed.

"I was blindfolded and being driven out of the airport. Anytime I asked the personnel where I was being taken to, I get a slap for it, so I genuinely believed that I was going to be killed because I did not know where I was being taken to.

"While we were going, I could sense we were no longer in Accra [because there was no traffic]; I could sense that perhaps this is the motorway. My instincts were telling me that I was going to be killed at Bundase; eventually, we parked, and I had to reorient myself that perhaps this is a police station and even that, I did not know which police station it was…" he said.

Oliver Barker-Vormawor's arrest on account of the Ghana Police Service was about a Facebook post in which he had threatened to "do the coup" himself if the Electronic Transfer Levy Bill was passed into law.

Charged with treason felony, his trial at the Ashaiman District Court has been adjourned on multiple occasions, with the state yet to move the case forward.

Watch his full interview below:

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