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27.05.2004 Regional News

Journalists urged to promote peace between people of Nkonya and Alavanyo

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Ho, May 27, GNA - Mr Kwasi Owusu-Yeaboa, the Volta Regional Minister, has urged media personnel to help promote peace between the people of Nkonya and Alavanyo in the region.

Speaking at a meeting of the two parties under the auspices of the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) at Ho on Wednesday, Mr Owusu-Yeaboa said: " Journalists, show sensitivity and circumspection in your reportage concerning the Nkonya-Alavanyo conflict".

A nine-member Mediation and Settlement Committee for peace was set up at the meeting which was aimed at giving the two parties the chance to publicly re-affirm their preparedness and commitment to employing dialogue as means to ending the conflict.

The people of Nkonya and Alavanyo also agreed to constitute a Consultative Committee to be made up of five members mainly the youth from each side to monitor and ensure cessation of hostilities.

Mr Owusu-Yeboa observed that recent "screaming headlines" concerning the conflict which indicated that there were "countless casualties and hostilities coming as close as only eight kilometres or so away from Ho only proved to be and amounted to media incitement".

He said such publications tended to undermine the intelligence and security efforts by the REGSEC.

Some authorities from among the two parties at the meeting urged the media to avoid creating the impression that one faction has a better case than the other.

The meeting said the role of the youth was crucial to the resolution of the conflict and observed that whereas the leaderships of both sides seemed genuinely committed to peace, the youth have on several occasions disrupted peace measures by issuing threats.

The meeting said there are shadowy figures who because of the monetary gains they were making due to the conflict situation regularly stoked the fires of hostility in order to maintain the status quo and concluded that it ought to be brought to the centre of peace initiatives.