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25.02.2009 General News

Interior Minister warns: "Offenders will be smoked out"

By myjoyonline

The Interior Minister Cletus Avoka has warned youth groups in the Northern Region to desist from acts that lead to ethnic and political violence or face the full rigours of the law.

The minister said this on Wednesday when he led a high-powered government delegation including the Defense Minister, Lt. Gen. Joseph Henry Smith (Rtd), and the Acting Inspector-General of Police, Mrs Elizabeth Mills-Robertson, to assess the security situation there.

At least one person died and six others sustained various degrees of injury in recent clashes between supporters of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the area.

Mr Avoka urged the security agencies in the area to be vigilant and arrest perpetrators of violence for prosecution.

He said persons who “hide under the guise of party or chieftaincy affiliation to commit violence would be smoked out.

The minister regretted the perennial violence in the area saying the energies of the youth must rather be channelled into more profitable endeavours.

Mr Avoka reminded the people that maintaining peace in the region has been an expensive venture for government, stressing that it's time the youth in the area stopped the violent confrontations that have been associated with the region.

He indicated that the region has had a fair representation in the Mills government, a horizon he said is a good development for the region. “To whom much is given, much is expected,” he said.

Fiifi Koomson