The Northern Regional Minister, Hon. Shani Alhassan Shaibu called for peace in his address at the Northern Regional House of Chiefs at the second meeting of the first session of the house.
In his address, he commended the chiefs for their commitment, sacrifices and dedication in bringing the people of the North together.
However, he lamented that, there are still difficult and complex situations in the region which is a big worry to the Regional Security Council.
The most prominent he mentioned include; the Yong Dakpemyili dispute, the Nanton chieftaincy stalemate, the Karaga chieftaincy stalemate, the volatile Bimbilla Chieftaincy issue, the Land disputes in Saboba and along the borders with the Savannah region, and the indiscriminate felling of trees and sale of lands within the Northern Region which causes tensions.
He added that these disputes are roadblocks to the government under the leadership of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo vision of creating create an enabling environment for the development of our communities.
“Peace is vital in the developmental agenda; the business opportunities being created and the infrastructural development that is taking place throughout the country cannot be enjoyed if there is no peace. This peace must be achieved through our individual and collective efforts,” he emphasized.
To curb this, he said the Regional Security Council will continue to monitor the situations so that they do not escalate into violence.
Hon Shaibu expressed a firm belief that the noble House of Chiefs is better placed to handle the resolution of these disputes to complement the regional security council role in maintaining the peace, law and order of the region.
“It is our view that this house would take up these matters and act on them diligently and also negotiate and dialogue with the factions involved as well as collaborate with Agencies such as the Regional Peace Council to curtail these menaces,” he said.
The Minister for chieftain and Religious Affairs, Hon. Ebenazer Kojo Kum revealed that, 60% of conflicts in Ghana are chieftaincy related, but the constitution of Ghana has made Chiefs the masters of their own rules, hence chieftaincy issues should be resolved by them.
He charged the chiefs to ensure that there are no chieftaincy conflicts, as well as assured them of the full support of the ministry to aid the chiefs in resolving conflicts.
Operation Clean Northern Region
Hon. Shaibu appealed to the Chiefs to join the Clean Northern Region campaign and to share in his vision of ensuring a clean and healthy region.
“Just as the saying goes cleanliness is next to godliness. As you are aware, on Saturday, 29th May, the region embarked on a clean-up exercise code-named “Operation Clean Northern Region”. I must indicate that the exercise was a success and I commend you all for your support in achieving our overall goal,” he said.
He admonished the Chiefs to continue to support and work towards the sustenance of the clean-up day for the region by encouraging their subjects to propagate the word especially to the youth on the next clean-up exercise scheduled for Saturday, 26th June, 2021.
“Just as peace is important in our development so is good sanitation and health so we must collectively work to succeed in this process,” he said.
Population and Housing Census
Hon Shaibu also appealed to the people of the north to corporate with officials of the 2021 Population and Housing Census (PHC) on the day of the Census Night scheduled for Sunday, 27th June, 2021.
The President of the Northern Regional House of Chiefs, Ndan Yaa Naa Abukar II on behalf of the members of the house commended Hon. Shaibu for exhibiting exemplary leadership and pledged their support in achieving the stipulated initiatives.
He urged the people of the Northern region to avail themselves for the PHC exercise as it is very crucial for the development of the region.