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Akufo-Addo charges Konkombas, Chokosis to settle ethnic disputes

BY: Samuel Duodu & Mohammed Fugu
President Akufo-Addo exchanging pleasantries with the Paramount Chief of Chereponi
President Akufo-Addo exchanging pleasantries with the Paramount Chief of Chereponi

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has appealed to the leaders of the Konkomba and Chokosi ethnic groups at Chereponi to soften their stance and speedily settle the recurring ethnic disputes which have claimed many lives and destroyed many properties.

He said the time had come for the feuding factions to give peace a chance and chart a common course so that they could benefit from the numerous opportunities that the government was initiating in the country.

President Akufo-Addo made the appeal when he addressed a durbar of chiefs and people of Chereponi last Thursday during his tour of the North East Region.

"The time has come to bring these violent conflicts to an end. The new Ghana that we are building doesn't have space for conflict and unnecessary violence, the seizure of land by both Konkombas and Anufos should be stopped. People have been farming for years and they know who farms on what land so we should try and bring these incidents to a conclusion," he said.

He told the gathering, “Let peace prevail in this part of the world; there are a lot of opportunities ahead of us in Ghana now but those opportunities will not materialise if we continue with these unnecessary ethnic conflicts."

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Report

President Akufo-Addo indicated that the Minister of the Interior had received the report of a committee that investigated the violence and he was studying it in detail, adding that, “I am sure that very soon, the report will be made public".

The report,  he said, should outline the underpinning cause of the recurring ethnic violence which would enable the government and various stakeholders to nip the incident in the bud.

"My presence here will send a powerful signal to the minister that there is the need for him to conclude processes  of the report as well as to accelerate police investigations into the latest incident. My hope is that with the settlement that has taken place in Dagbon, the consequence of that settlement will prevail in the entire country, especially in the Northern Region.

“We want to turn on a new leaf in Ghana. If we organise ourselves properly, the prospects for our country becoming a nation of prosperity and progress in our lifetime is very great," he added.

The President expressed optimism that with the effective utilisation of resources, the future of the country would be very bright which would be a subject of envy in West Africa and the world at large.

However, he said, that required that all the people of Ghana must participate in the process without any exception.

Development

Touching on the development of the area, President Akufo-Addo said all roads in the districts had been captured in the government's development agenda and construction works on some of them would soon commence.

Responding to a request by the Regent of Chereponi, Fame Ndakar Jaminja, for the establishment of a Girls’ College of Education in the area, he said, "I am excited by your appeal for the establishment of a Girls’ College of Education which is focused on Science and French. Some of these requests have become my personal responsibility because my presence here must give you hope so you will be hearing from my office soon".

Appeal

Fame Jaminja also appealed to the President to upgrade the Chereponi Polyclinic into a district hospital to cater for the increasing population which was putting pressure on the existing facility.

While commending the government and the security agencies for swiftly responding to the violent conflict to curb further escalation, he also appealed to the President to consider setting up a temporary military base in the area to forestall such disturbances.