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General News | Nov 1, 2004

Chiefs, Politicians pledge to promote peace in Dagbon

GNA

Tamale, Nov. 1, GNA - The President of the Northern Region House of Chief Nayiri Na Bohagu Mahami Abdulai Sheriga on Monday appealed to politicians, particularly in Dagbon, to stop the habit of issuing threatening press statements, which would further worsen the volatile political atmosphere.

He said politicians, who thought the media was the only means by which to address and iron out issues were not doing the Region any good but rather sending a bad image to the rest of the country about the situation in the Region.

The Nayiri, who is also the Paramount Chief of the Mamprugu Traditional Area, said this when he addressed some members of the Northern Region House of Chiefs, the Media, Political Party representatives and other stakeholders in Tamale on the need to promote peace in the Region before, during and after the December elections.

Nayiri Na Bohagu also called on the people of the Region to live together as brethren so that the rest of the country would not look down on people from the North and brand them as conflict loving people. He said the conflict in the North had existed for years and needed commitment of stakeholders, the parties and the media to seek lasting solution to the problem.

He, therefore, called on Muslims to use the Ramadan period to offer prayers to Allah to ensure that the December elections would be violence-free in Dagbon and the rest of the country. The Nayiri cautioned the Electoral Commission (EC) and the Police to desist from any act that would create doubts among the public and make them to question the credibility of the elections.

Mr David Ampah Benning, Deputy Northern Regional Police Commander, repeated the call on the public to help the Police retrieve weapons from individuals to ensure violence-free elections in December.

He said the Police was doing its best to ensure lasting peace in the Region adding that the crime rate in the Tamale Metropolitan Area had gone down since the Government increased personnel for night patrols. Mr Benning deplored the negative activities of the youth, particularly those of political party activists, who engaged in fighting rather than seeking the development of their communities.

Mr Alhassan Imoro, Northern Regional Chairman of Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) appealed to the Regional Security Council (RESEC) to lift the ban on radio stations to discuss political issues since it was impacting negatively on the development of democracy in the Region. He said politicians should always be cautious of the statements they made so that the media would not report on them to create confusion. Madam Janet Adama Mohammed, Northern Ghana Director of the Christian Council, who chaired the function, called on participants to show true commitment to the pledges to ensure that real peace returned to Dagbon. Representatives of the People's National Convention, (PNC), the NPP and the NDC as well as the media took turns to pledge their commitment towards working together to promote peace in Dagbon before, during and after the elections.

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