19.02.2006 Regional News

Farmers demonstrate against Fulani herdsmen

19.02.2006 LISTEN

Mpraeso, Feb 19, GNA - Hundreds of farmers from eight communities in the Kwahu South District, led by their assembly members, have gone on a one-hour demonstration at Mpraeso in protest against the activities of Fulani herdsmen and their herds of cattle.

The demonstrators were drawn from Kwahu Tafo, Nteso, Ankoma, Bokuruwa, Kotoso, Ahenase, Kokobi, Brukuase and other surrounding villages.

Some of the placards they carried read, "Mr President, come to our aid", "Our chiefs have failed us', "Our chiefs have sold our birth right to Fulani herdsmen" and "Fulani herdsmen are killing and raping our women."

They matched from the forecourt of the Mpraeso chief's palace to the office of the district assembly where they presented an eleven-point petition meant for the President to the District Chief Executive, Nana Onwona Asante.

The petition, which was presented on behalf of the farmers by the Assembly member for Bokuruwa, Mr Alex Agyei Duah, gave the District Security Council and the government seven days' ultimatum to drive away the herdsmen and their cattle from the area or they would advise themselves.

The petition said the farmers would no longer contain the nefarious activities of the Fulani herdsmen and their cattle and expressed the hope that the authorities would act swiftly to avoid bloodshed in the area.

It said the activities of the herdsmen and their cattle had prevented them from going to their farms and they blamed some chiefs in the communities for supporting the herdsmen in their use of their cattle to destroy their farms and sources of drinking water. The petition claimed the herdsmen, who are armed, set fire to the vegetation including trees being planted for forestation, rape women in the bush and shoot and kill farmers who challenge them. A similar demonstration organized by farmers from Pepease led by the Adehyiehene of the town, Nana Appeah Ofori II, against the activities of the herdsmen two weeks ago also presented a petition to the District Chief Executive, Nana Onwuna Asante at Mpraeso. The District Chief Executive assured the petitioners that he would forward their petitions to the President through the Regional Minister and hoped action would be taken to solve their problems.

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