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11.04.2010 Regional News

Situation in Bawku has serious implications - Mamprusi Regent

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Bawku (U/E), April 10, GNA - The smuggling into and the use of sophisticated weapons in Bawku portends real danger to the country and the earlier something was done to curtail the development the better it would be for all.

This was contained in a statement Mr Ibrahim Amandi Abdulkarim read on behalf of the Regent of the Bawku Mamprusi Community, Alhaji Ibrahim Adam Zangbeogo at a press conference held on Friday to give the Mamprusi version of recent developments in the Bawku Municipality.

The Regent said: "Bawku should be considered experimental and if we fail, to control the influx of arms and their usage here, the problem has the potentials to pervert every crevice of the Ghanaian Society in totality that in the near future the consequences can be any one's guess."

Commenting on the cancellation of the celebration of the 2010 Damba Festival in Bawku, Regent Zangbeogo said the Mamprusis were the originators of the festival and that the Dagombas, Nanumbas and Walas celebrated Damba because they were all descendants of Naa Gbewaa (The Red Hunter) and they were carved out of Mamprugu.

He explained that Mamprusis in Bawku used to celebrate the Damba festivals annually but had to stop it because of the protracted conflict. However, they thought that they could celebrate it this year because it seemed that peace had been restored; more so as the Samanpiid Festival of the Kussasi's was celebrated peacefully.

Regent Zangbeogo said the security agencies were informed about their intentions and the Bawku Municipal Security Council (MUSEC) gave them the go ahead to celebrate the festival only for National Security Council to stop them at the eleventh hour.

He said the "Tee Shirts" with the portrait of Former Chiefs of Bawku were printed for the festival and there was nothing wrong with it because there were historical antecedents and cited the portraits of the "Big Six" on the Bank of Ghana Cedi notes as clear example of honouring historical personalities.

Regent Zangbeogo noted that the banning of the sale and the wearing of the "Tee shirts" by the Bawku Municipal Security Council was wrong and urged all those, who were genuinely committed to resolving the Bawku crisis to approach every issue diligently and objectively.

The internecine Mamprusi-Kussasi chieftaincy conflict has flared up in recent weeks characterised by reprisal killings. The Upper East Regional Security Council has asked for the beefing up of security personnel deployed to the Municipality in view of the deteriorating security situation there.