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14.12.2003 General News

Factions in chieftaincy disputes urged to soften positions

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Sunyani, Dec. 14, GNA - The Brong-Ahafo Regional Minister, Nana Kwadwo Seinti, has appealed to all factions in chieftaincy disputes in the region to consider the harm they were doing to their communities by way of stifling development and "soften their positions" in the year 2004.

"It is only when the chiefs have reconsidered their positions in the chieftaincy disputes that amicable settlement can be made."

Nana Seinti made the appeal in an address to the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) meeting at the Residency over the weekend. The meeting reviewed the administrative performance of the region right from the time Nana Seinti took over from Mr. Ernest Akubuor Debrah as the Regional Minister in April this year.

The Regional Council of State Member, Mr Michael Kojo Adusah, Deputy Regional Minister, Mr. Yaw Adjei Duffour, the Regional Coordinating Director, Mr. F.O. Boateng, all the 13 District Chief Executives (DCEs) in the region, Chiefs, Heads of Departments, among others institutions were represented at the meeting.

Nana Seinti said the Government considered traditional rulers as partners in development because they served as focal points around which the people were mobilised for self-help projects.

The mobilisation of the people for self-help projects in the region had however, slowed down considerably because of the numerous chieftaincy disputes pending at the Regional House of Chiefs, he said.

The Regional Minister mentioned a letter from the Register of the Regional House of Chiefs, dated December 1, this year indicating that "the position of chieftaincy cases pending before the Judicial Committee of the House had not changed" and pleaded with the chiefs involved in such disputes to let the interest of the region reigned supreme in such matters.

He also appealed to the National House of Chiefs to determine as quickly as possible cases on the Berekum and Nsuatre disputes.

"As the year 2003 is getting to an end, I want to take the opportunity to appeal to all factions in the disputes to consider the harm they are doing to their towns and villages as far as development is concerned and soften their positions in year 2004 to pave the way for amicable settlement of the cases," Nana Seinti said.

He was, however, noted that violence and disturbances associated with chieftaincy disputes had reduced in the region since he assumed duty.

Nana Seinti noted that the Region had been generally calm throughout the year due to the vigilance of the security agencies.

He, however, mentioned the chieftaincy related disturbances at Banda-Ahenkro and Nchiraa between opposing factions and the violent protests at the end of September at Kenyasi No. 2 by the youth of Kenyasi Nos. 1 and 2 against Newmont God (Ghana) Limited for its failure to employ the youth of the area.

The recent release of the names of new districts created by the President also led to violent reaction at Duayaw-Nkwanta and Prang while there was also a religious conflict at Prang between Tijania and Al-suna Moslems.

He was happy to note that in each of the incidents policemen were rushed in to maintain law and order, stressing that, in the case of the youth at Kenyasi he personally met the youth, the officials of Newmont Company and chiefs of the area to resolve the matter amicably and commended the security agencies for their good work in relation to such incidents.

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