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General News of Wednesday, 1 July 2020

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Enforce vigilantism law to deter land guards – Osu Council

A member of the Osu Traditional Council is urging the government to enforce the recently passed Vigilantism Law to deal with the menace of Land Guards.

Nii Odoi Kwao II told GhanaWeb that although there are fewer reports of Land Guards fighting legitimate landowners from accessing their lands, the practice persists.

“Even now, because of the festering of land guards, what some families have done is that they have intentionally decided the join the Moslem faith because of our brothers from the North – you know because of their upbringing they are very strong – in order to get such people behind them to visit mayhem on their brothers and sisters because of land issue,” he said.

The Vigilantism and Related Offences Bill was passed into law last year following the Ayawaso West by-election Wuogon violence.

The law applies to a person who participates in the activities of a vigilante group that is associated with, related, connected or affiliated to a political party; a person who acts as a land guard and a person who engages in other acts of vigilantism.

It also seeks to disband political party vigilante groups and spells out prison terms for persons convicted of vigilante offences, with a maximum of 15 years.

Speaking on chieftaincy disputes in many Ga communities, Nii Kwao II also noted that many of these disputes are fuelled by the desire to grab lands in prime areas of the city and sell them.

“I am happy about this law that has been made and I hope that law will be enforced to its strictest sense…that one too can bring some sanity within the Accra area,” he said.

Most Ga communities in Ghana are bedevilled with one chieftaincy dispute or the other. Mostly two or more groups or clans claim ownership of a stool or an area that another clan or group is already ruling over.

Surprise and contentious installations of chiefs is a common feature in many Ga communities.



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