Tensions between the residents of the Lower Manya Krobo have escalated and resulted in violent clashes between the police and the youth allegedly over a massive disconnection exercise being undertaken by the Power Distribution Services (PDS).

Citi News’ Eastern Regional Correspondent Neil Nii Amatey Kanarku reported that about 30 people have been arrested following the violent clashes which have left several other people including civilians and the police injured.

Unconfirmed reports have it that the violent clashes led to the death of one resident as four police officers have sustained various degrees of injury.

Nii Kanarku also reported that the police were being over-powered by the rampaging youth in the area.

The clashes occurred at the premises of the Lower Manya Municipal Assembly when the residents were massing up in their numbers to march to the PDS office in the area to ensure the discontinuation exercise began on last week is stopped.

Reports suggest that the police were pelted with stones when they tried to disperse the crowd.

Speaking in an interview with Citi News, the Eastern Regional Police Command, ASP Ebenezer Tetteh, confirmed the injury of the four police personnel adding that, reinforcement has arrived from the Eastern Regional Police Command to bring the situation under control.

He also added that the Police are doing everything possible within the law to bring the chaotic situation under control.

He added that actions of the police to maintain peace and order will be justified despite its consequences due to the refusal of the residents to back down from attacking the police.

He added that the police have a responsibility to ensure lives and properties are protected.

Background

PDS on Monday suspended an ongoing disconnection exercise at  Kpongunor.

Officials from PDS began a mass disconnection exercise last week from Kpong and Nuaso, but were restricted from carrying out a lawful disconnection exercise when they arrived at Kpongunor.

The Odumase Krobo District Police Commander, ASP Harry Selormey, told Citi News the PDS team has suspended the disconnection exercise in the area until further notice.

“For the past two years, there has been a back and forth with payment of the bills in the Krobo area. Somewhere last week, we had a communication from the PDS through our outfit that they will embark on a massive disconnection of those households that have failed to settle their electricity bills and we are having an emergency meeting to review the security situation in the area.”

The agitated youth reportedly mounted roadblocks and threatened to attack staff of PDS.

Some police officers who were dispatched to the scene had to withdraw subsequently as they were outnumbered by the irate youth.

A similar feud between residents and workers of PDS turned bloody in 2017 when angry residents in Somanya attacked PDS’ office.

Police vehicles were torched and properties destroyed in the violent attack.

Many residents have since refused to pay electricity bills and threatened to attack PDS staff who attempt disconnecting their homes.

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