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27.04.2007 General News

Security threat in Ho municipality

By Kofi Agbelie

Information gathered by The Statesman indicates that tension is mounting between the people of Lume and Dodome, two farming communities along the Ho-Kpedze road over the ownership of a piece of land between the two communities.

The Statesman can authoritatively report that the chiefs of Lume have sent customary drinks with a threatening message to the Dodome chiefs warning them and their subjects not to set foot on the disputed land, which the two parties have laid claim to.

Speaking to The Statesman, the Assembly Member for Dodome Electoral Area, George Quarshie Hornuvo said the potentially explosive situation arose as a result of a boundary dispute between the people of Lume-Atsiame and Dodome-Awuiaso. He explained that the people of Dodome contracted that part of the land to sand winners, an action deemed untenable by the people of Lume-Atsiame since in their opinion, they were the rightful owners of the land. Consequently, traditional drinks were sent last Tuesday by the Lume-Atsiame traditional rulers to their Dodome counterparts to advice themselves and their subjects not to set foot on the land or face the consequences.

The sending of the drinks, he was at pains to stress, is usually a signal of an impending conflict.

A visit by The Statesman to both communities revealed that they were all on high alert and have plans in place to protect their communities, an indication of how far the situation as degenerated.

Mr Hornuvo told this paper that when the issue came up recently, he led the two parties to the Municipal Chef Executive, Mawutor Goh, but he in turn referred them to the Police. However, the police have failed to take any action or even visit the communities, he said.

In the absence of prompt action from the law enforcement agencies, the two communities allegedly engaged in spiritual warfare, 'planting' talismans and objects to scare each other off the land. The alleged removal of one such object by some citizens of Dodome led to the sending of the drinks and the cryptic message, he told The Statesman.

Attempts to inform the District Police commander and his deputy last have proved futile, but the MCE has been informed. Mr Goh assured this paper he would, with the assistance of the security agencies, do everything in his power to ensure peace returned to the two communities.

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