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13.10.2004 General News

Government holds key to peace in Dagbon - NDC

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Accra, Oct. 13, GNA - The National Democratic Congress (NDC) on Wednesday said the Government held the key for absolute peace in the Dagbon Traditional Area.

"The solution to the Dagbon crisis lies in the ruling New Patriotic Party's (NPP) ability to uphold the Rule of Law," Mr Lee Ocran, a National Vice Chairman of NDC said at a press conference in Accra. The Government must demonstrate transparency, fairness, even handedness and above all ensure that justice was always manifestly done in the handling of all cases, especially when it affected activists of the NPP, he said.

The press conference according to the Party was necessitated by recent events in the Northern Region, especially the killing of Master Ibrahim Amidu, a 14-year-old boy, in Tamale over the weekend. Mr. Ocran said: "The threat by Government to re-impose a state of emergency was unfortunate.

"What is required is not a state of emergency or even the threat of it, but investigations into the murder of the innocent boy. This is what will make the people build confidence in the system and ultimately lead to lasting peace in the area."

Mr Ocran said no amount of threats of re-imposition of the state of emergency or drastic measures could solve the problem without the Government's demonstration and administration of swift justice irrespective of the personalities, parties or groups involved. He reminded the Government that re-imposition of state of emergency was not a solution to the problem saying that while the state of emergency was in force in Yendi and Tamale after the assassination of Ya-Naa Yakubu Andani II, Paramount Chief Dagbon and 30 others, there were a number of disturbances, such as the clashes between the butchers and an attempt to take over the old palace of the Ya Na by a faction in the dispute.

He said the NDC was committed to finding a lasting peace to the Dagbon problem, but was of the view that the latest disturbances could not form the basis for the re-imposition of a state of emergency. Mr Ocran also appealed to the Police Service to exhibit a high sense of professionalism and neutrality to ensure that the people of Dagbon would have confidence in the Service.

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