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11.01.2005 Regional News

JAK, Appoint Neutral Person As Northern Regional Minister

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Tamale, Jan.11, GNA - Residents of Tamale Metropolis on Monday called on President John Agyekum Kufuor, to appoint a neutral person as a Northern Regional Minister, to ensure peace and stability in the conflict-prone Region.
A random sampling of views by the Ghana News Agency (GNA), revealed that most respondents were satisfied with the style of leadership of Mr Ernest Debrah, the out-going Regional Minister and are in favour with the appointment of another person who have no traditional links with the Dagbon chieftaincy dispute.
Majority of the respondents were of the view that Mr Debrah had performed creditably and hence the need for the President to consult him before appointing another regional minister. Mr Edward Ameyibor, Managing Director of Tamale-based Diamond FM station, said: "Appointing someone to head the Region is the prerogative of the President but I will advise him not to use the son of the land".
He explained that if a Dagomba was appointed a regional minister there was no way the person could have the free hand to execute development projects.
"Even if the person tries to become a Messiah, the other gates of Dagbon would not be satisfied."
Mr Ameyibor, a former Supervising Chief Editor of the GNA and President of the Ghana Journalists Association, said appointing a non-Dagomba would be the appropriate thing to do now.
Mrs Janet Adama Mohammed, Regional Director of the Christian Council of Ghana also appealed to the President to nominate a non-Dagomba as regional minister.
"Honestly I will not agree with the President if somebody from the Abudu or Andani gate is appointed to manage the Region". The Abudu and the Andani gates are the line of succession to the Yana skin and the belligerents in the Dagbon chieftaincy crises. Mrs Mohammed said the appointment of any member of the two gates would worsen the security situation in the Region.
She said the Region needed somebody who was prepared to sacrifice for the people and well versed with the act of diplomacy. Mr Alhassan Imoro, the Editor of the Northern Advocate, appealed to the President not to make the mistake to appoint a Dagomba as regional minister. "The President must either maintain Debrah or look for a neutral person outside the two gates."
Dr Baba Sampana, an opinion leader in Tamale, however, has a different opinion. He said a son of the Region should be appointed so that the government would test the peace and the reconciliation process to see whether it was really working.
Mr Paul Osei-Tutu, Regional Manager of the GNA said it did not matter whether the person to be appointed as regional minister was from the region or not. He said what was more important was the competence of the person in administering the Region.
Mr Osei-Tutu said the person should be somebody who knows the needs of the people and has the ability to work with both the Abudus and Andanis to ensure relative peace in the Region.

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