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General News of Sunday, 22 April 2018

Source: Starrfmonline.com

‘Exclude us from ‘insecure’ Savanna Region’- Mamprusis

More minority ethnic groupings leaving in the Gonjaland continue to declare intent to depart the Traditional Area, in the event the Regional Reorganization and Development Ministry agrees to create the proposed Savanna Region out of the Northern Region as requested by chiefs and people of the biggest traditional area in the region.

The latest to join the intended mass exodus from the Gonjaland is the Mamprusi minority leaving in part of the North Gonja district after same declarations by the Tampulmas in the district and some Nchumurus and Nawuris purportedly leaving in the Kpandai district.

The chiefs and people of about 10 villages near Daboya, the North Gonja District capital, held a press briefing in Tamale appealing to government to include their jurisdiction among the proposed North East Region which has been requested by their tribesmen in the Mamprugu Traditional Area.

The villages; Lukula, Kutula, Kuchuamli, Sakpega, Mempeasem, Kuldani, Sakpala, Zooyiri, Bugsa and Sagya, unanimously declared insecurity and underdevelopment as part of the motives for its petition to the commission responsible for the creation of new regions.

“We desperately plead with the Government to be carved into the North East Region, on the basis that while the rest of the country are enjoying independence, freedom and justice as well as human and material resource development with vibrant economic activities, we still seem to remain in the era of the stone age. We are the worse group of people in the country when it comes to peace and security, education, healthcare delivery, road network, electricity supply, socio-cultural activity including sports and overall development”, Mr. Issac Azindow, spokesperson for the group explained.

The minority tribe complained about the weaken state of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the area due to total deliberate dereliction by the ‘Gonja’ authorities ruling the communities.

“In independent Ghana we are in a state of suppression and fear of being attacked as threats of war are issued to keep the people submissive to the oppressor”, the group said about Goal 16 (Peace and Security).

“The 1930 political demarcation that carved these Mamprusi villages into Gonja is the major source of disputes in the area since the Gonjas took advantage and extended their traditional rule by installing Gonja chiefs over Mamprusi villages as if they were war captives. This has not been resolved since then and we believe that the solution has come by the creation of the new regions that will solve the problem once and for all from the same political perspective”, the group continues.

According to the group, many schools in the Mamprusi dominated communities are closed due to lack of teachers and teaching/learning resources and claims that “Nobody cares if the schools are functional and whether the teachers are in school teaching or not”.

It continued; “We suffer from a deliberate attempt to keep the people illiterate in order to maintain Gonja ruler-ship over their lives and our area will be found to have the highest illiteracy rate in the whole country if a study is carried out. If you want your child to be educated to the highest level, you simply have to get the child to the big towns outside the district or he or she ends up as a school dropout”.

In the area of healthcare, the group said pregnant women and children continue to die due to healthcare facilities. There is no single facility on the communities to serve welfare service and residents travel long distance to seek care in under -resourced/staffed centers, the group added.

“Most medical cases have to go either to Kubori Health Centre, Fumbisi Health Centre, Walewale Hospital, Dalun or Tamale for care when sick. There is no ambulance in that vast area for transport of emergencies to the nearest hospital. Sometimes you wonder why nobody cares about your physical, mental and social welbeing”.

The group also complained about the deplorable road network to the villages saying the only road becomes impassable during rainy season. They lamented also about the intentional abandonment of electricity extension to the communities.

The Mamprusis concluded by saying; “These and many other reasons compel us to opt to become part of the North East Region as it appears we are hanging bats and will be completely lost or even further terrorized if we are made to stay in the Savannah Region. As peace-loving people, we know from experience that the North East Region will be peaceful with vibrant in socio-economic transformation and development”.