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Regional News of Tuesday, 6 January 2004

Source: GNA

Traditional rulers asked to embrace rival chieftaincy gates

Bawku (U/E), Jan. 6, GNA - A member of the Council of State, Mr. C.K. Tedam, has asked traditional rulers to maintain good relations with rival chieftaincy gates for the sake of true reconciliation and peaceful co-existence.

He said resolving differences was paramount for the socio-economic progress of every society.

Mr Tedam said this when he addressed a durbar of chiefs and people of the Bawku Traditional Area on behalf of President John Agyekum Kufuor at this year's "Samanpiid" festival at Bawku.

The occasion, which was devoid of tension, brought together four Members of Parliament (MPs) from the area as well as political leaders from the various parties.

The Council of State member urged the chiefs and people to bury their differences so as to foster unity, adding that the continued presence of security personnel in the area was a huge drain on the national coffers.

Mr Tedam noted that the President's travels to seek investors to boost the economy would yield nothing if there were no peace. The Upper East Regional Minister, Mr Mahami Salifu, reiterated the need for peace in the region to attract investors and capital to improve their living conditions.

He appealed to the chiefs to desist from land disputes and unproductive litigations that undermine peace and security in the area.

The Regional Minister said it was unfortunate that traditional festivals sometimes degenerate into political issues, thereby creating disunity among the people.

Mr Abdul-Rahman Gumah, Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Bawku, called for concerted efforts to ensure lasting peace in the area for development.

Mr Gumah cautioned the people against the felling of trees and the indiscriminate burning of bushes, saying the practice had adversely affected food production and would completely degrade the environment, if not checked.

The Bawku Naba, Asigri Abugrago Azoka II, urged his subjects to be peace loving and law-abiding citizens to promote the development of the area.

He appealed to them to pursue actions that would promote unity and reduce tension.

"Fair play is the surest way to attain peace and harmony. Bawku has had enough of name-calling as a violence-prone town, let's resolve to banish violence and allow the rule of law to prevail", declared the chief.

An appeal for the Bawku Naba Educational Endowment Fund yielded 43.2 million cedis. The money would be used to construct two girls' hostels at Kusanaba and Tempane Senior Secondary Schools.