Deal with youth clashes

The police have arrested nine persons in connection with a clash between two rivalry youth groups from Nima and Mamobi in Accra on Tuesday over supposed territorial supremacy.

Among the suspects seven are in police custody assisting in investigations, while the remaining two others are at the Police Hospital under guard receiving treatment for injuries they suffered during the clashes.

Besides, two persons sustained gunshot wounds from stray bulletsand are said to be responding to treatment at the 37 Military Hospital.

Reports said there were sporadic gunshots from the two rivalry groups during the pandemonium, compelling people to flee for their lives.

The Ghanaian Times is worried there are no signs that clashes among youth groups and between the youths and others are going to stop any time soon because after one such clash is quelled and matters put to rest, another one soon erupts.

For instance, last year, there were a number of such clashes. In June, the youth of Ejura clashed with security personnel over the death of a social media activist from the area by name Ibrahim Muhammed, otherwise known as Kaaka.

The clash led to the death of two and injury of four, including an army Lieutenant.

Then in October, angry youth from Luhuor, near Sege in the Ada West District of the Greater Accra, clashed with the police over the operations of Electrochem Limited, a private company managing the Songor salt mining site in the area.

One person sustained gunshot wounds and was rushed to a nearby hospital, while 40 community members were arrested for the destruction of property worth thousands of Ghana cedis.

Not long afterwards on December 28, the police at Mamponteng in the Kwabre East Municipality of Ashanti Region reported the clash between two rival youth groups in the municipality leaving two persons seriously injured.

Barely a month after this, the Nima-Mamobi clash, happening in the infant stage of this year, points to the fact that these clashes are not easy to deal with.

This may be due to the varied and unpredictable reasons or causes.

This notwithstanding, the police must intensify their intelligence activities across the country in order to nip such clashes in the bud or immediately contain them when they erupt.

The effects of these clashes are very costly to individuals, the communities where they occur and the nation at large.

The deaths become great loss to families and the society as a whole, as they deprive the families of breadwinners and loved ones whose lives benefitted them in various ways, while the larger society is denied knowledge and skills for community and national development.

Also, such clashes have the potential to scare away investors once they consider them as threats to their own security and that of their companies, especially those ones in which the youths vent their spleen on the police and other security personnel who come in to stop the clashes.

In some of the clashes, especially those relating to politics and land, it is obvious there are some people behind the scenes fanning them because they stand to derive some benefits from them.

Due to this, police investigations in all youth clashes must be thorough to punish these instigators matter their status in society otherwise such occurrences would persist till who knows when.

It is common knowledge that the youth are faced with unemployment problems, which make them susceptible to crime.

Therefore, the government must do everything possible to ease these problems while the security agencies, especially the police, do all they can to deal with the youth clashes because they undermine the peace and tranquility in society and thereby jeopardise development.


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