Mr. Prosper Douglas Bani, Minister of the Interior, has inaugurated an Inter-Ministerial and Departmental Committee on Friday in Accra, tasked to deal with activities of nomadic herdsmen in the country.
It comes after several violent clashes between herdsmen, mostly Fulanis, and the local people in some parts of the country, especially in Asante Akyem Agogo in the Ashanti Region and parts of the Eastern Region.
With a six-month mandate, the committee, among other responsibilities, is to identify areas of operations of the nomadic herdsmen, propose recommendations to tackle the menace, consider policy issues and proposals for the development of legislation to guide activities of nomads in the country.
The eleven-member committee, includes Dr. Benjamin Agordzo, Ghana Police Service, Mr. Joseph Yaman, National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), Mr. George Nelson, National Security Council Secretariat, Mr. John Tetteh, Ministry of Works and Housing, Mr. Kwabena Denkyira, Ministry of Chieftaincy and Mr. Kwanina Arkroful, Ministry of Food and Agriculture.
The rest are Mr. Joseph Obeng-Poku, Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr. John Eugene Nyante Nyadu, Ministry of Justice, Mr. Alex Daary, Bureau of National Investigations, Mr. Francis Azumia, National Peace Council, and Mr. John Applerh, National Commission on Small Arms.
Mr. Bani said the setting up of the committee was necessitated by the Fulani menace, which according to him was of grave concern to the government.
He said though government had on several occasions deployed security operatives to areas where there had been clashes between the herdsmen and the local people, “it has become extremely important to constitute this committee to address the key concerns and come up with workable solutions.”
“Your work is not to stop the movement of nomadic herdsmen in the country. Yours is to engineer ways by which we can harmoniously live together and manage the situation”, Mr. Bani advised the committee members.
He pledged government’s support for the committee, and hoped it would develop and propose innovative solutions to address the menace.
Mr. Applerh, who is also the Executive Secretary for the Small Arms Commission, on behalf of the committee, said members were committed to working within their terms of reference, to find solutions to the menace, which he said was a threat to national security.
He said the committee would be fair to all parties, and work with available literature in finding solution to the challenge, which has become an annual occurrence.
By Julius Yao Petetsi