Generalising Bawku conflict affecting hotel industry — Hotels Association
The Upper East Regional Chairman of the Ghana Hotels Association (GHA), Tindan Bagarinyii Louis, has urged the media not to generalise their reports on the unending Bawku conflict, as it is negatively affecting the hotel industry.
“The crisis in Bawku has not escalated to all parts of the region so the media should desist from generalising the conflict situation in Bawku as it has put fear in people, thereby preventing them from travelling to the area to engage in any form of activity” he stressed.
He said, “you know some people including tourists who visit the region usually lodge in hotels and other hospitality facilities and the news reports by the media that seem to generalise the Bawku conflict has prevented people from freely moving to the region.”
Mr Tindan was speaking with the Daily Graphic to highlight the impact of the Bawku conflict on the hotel industry in the region.
Bawku has been the hotbed of decades-old ethnic conflict between the Mamprusis and Kusasis and has claimed many lives over the period.
For instance, checks conducted in some hotels within Bolgatanga revealed that some of them had lost revenue since the conflict resurfaced about two years ago due to their inability to receive guests.
“We are deeply worried about the situation in Bawku as people who wish to travel to the region to engage in other activities are afraid to come, citing the conflict in Bawku,” he indicated.
Mr Tindan noted that the GHA was concerned about the happenings in Bawku and ,therefore, urged the media to always get their reportage on the conflict right, saying “as an association, we urge the media not to create a negative impression that there is general insecurity in the region but rather help de-escalate the situation in Bawku.”
“The conflict situation in Bawku is not a total representation of the security situation in the region” he stated, adding “the crisis in Bawku is within a curtailed area and not across the entire region.”
He assured tourists and other guests that it was safe to travel to the region to engage in any form of activity, stressing “the security [apparatus] is on high alert and is working hard to control the situation in Bawku.”
While admitting that the Bawku conflict had negatively impacted the revenue generation of players in the hotel industry in the region since 2022, he expressed optimism that the issue would be dealt with so people can freely move to the region to enable the hotel industry bounce back.
Further, he entreated the factions in the age-old Bawku conflict to lay down their arms as it would go a long way to address the negative perception of insecurity in the region.