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Regional News of Saturday, 22 April 2017

Source: Starrfmonline.com

Homes demolished in Yilo Krobo, New Juaben land dispute

One of the demolished houses

A protracted territorial land dispute between residents of Yilo Krobo and New Juaben in the Eastern region has worsened following the demolishing of several buildings on the disputed parcel of land Saturday morning .

The dispute between the two factions arises every year. Some individuals from New Juaben claim ownership of some acres of land occupied by the Krobos, accusing the Krobos of trespassing into their land, an accusation rejected by the Krobos.

This creates violent confrontations especially when attempts are made by either faction to sell or develop a portion of the disputed area.

The Eastern Regional Security Council and the regional Coordinating Council were petitioned years ago for demarcation to be done to fix the problem, but that has not been done heightening the tensions.

On Saturday morning, a man from New Juaben identified as Mustapha Amponsah entered the disputed area with a bulldozer accompanied by alleged land guards to demolish six buildings in addition to two others demolished a month ago, displacing the occupants who are mainly peasant Krobo farmers.

Apparently, the man has secured a writ of possession and demolition order from the Koforidua Magistrate Court ‘B’ after a judgement was delivered in absentia as the 65-year-old landlord, Ahua Kwaku Tei and his Defence Counsel failed to make appearance due to illness.

The landowner, Kwaku Tei told Starr News the said land located in the territorial boundaries of New Juaben and Yilo Krobo belongs to his ancestors who occupied the area since 1844, adding that he came to occupy the area about 35years ago after the death of its occupants.

He said the demolishing took residents by surprise.

War Drum

Krobo residents in the disputed area say the regional Security Council must analyse the boundary dispute as a security threat because they will defend their ancestral lands by the spilling of their blood.

According to the residents, the youth in Somanya, who are family members are reportedly preparing to storm the area to join forces in defence of their ancestral land which may lead to a bloody clash.

The Assembly Member for Aboabo electoral area, Achirah Samuel Tettey, told Starr News the case of the territorial dispute has been tabled before the current Eastern Regional Minister through his deputy, just a week ago.

He said there is widespread speculation that some officials of the current government are behind the demolishing exercise to drive away the Krobos from the area.

The Assembly Member mentioned that the peace in the area cannot be guaranteed if the government fails to intervene to resolve the boundary dispute.

Meanwhile, the affected residents mostly peasant farmers, are planning to file stay of execution on Monday to avoid further demolishing