The chiefs and people of Challa traditional area in the Nkwanta –South Municipality of the Oti Region have celebrated their annual Yam festival at Odome, which aimed at uniting the people and also mobilising the human and material resources in the traditional area for development.
The week-long festival, which was used to display the rich culture and the tradition of the people of Challa, was climaxed with a durbar attended by hundreds of people from the Oti Region and other parts of the country.
Speaking at the durbar, the Nkwanta-South Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Mr Bright Kwame Lenwah, commended the chiefs and people of Challa for using their annual yam festival to promote peace in the traditional area, which he said was essential to the development of the municipality and the region.
Mr Lenwah stressed the need for the chiefs and people of the municipality to cherish the existing peace in the municipality and the region irrespective of the many ethnic groups in the area so as to promote unity in diversity for the development of the municipality and region at large.
The Nkwanta-South MCE said peace was a prerequisite for development, without which efforts being made towards growth would elude them, and urged all to safeguard the peace being enjoyed over the years in order to create the appropriate environment for development to thrive.
He observed that there were various forms of misunderstanding in the various traditional areas in the country, however, such problems were resolved through dialogue, and asked the chiefs and people of Challa to adopt the use of dialogue in addressing chieftaincy issues as well as other conflicts to ensure peace.
The National Youth Secretary of the Challa Youth Association (CYA), Mr Mohammed Atakora, said the Association had been educating parents to regard education as the key to development, and urged them to send their children to school and to support them to become responsible adults in future.
Mr Atakora also asked children to take advantage of the opportunities their parents and government had provided them to develop themselves, to enable them prepare adequately to face the future with confidence and hope.
The Paramount Chief of the Challa Traditional Area, Nana Kenewu Addo II, appealed to the government to rehabilitate the road from Nkwanta to Odome and other roads in the traditional area to open up the area for smooth economic activities.
Nana Addo II also appealed to the government to develop the ancestral cave at Odome so that it will serve as a tourist site in the municipality, which he noted would promote tourism and increase the revenue base of the Assembly to enable it carry out the needed development.
FROM SAMUEL AGBEWODE, ODOME