Let’s all help to resolve Bawku conflict

Our lead story today is an unfortunate account of the grue­some killing of a national security operative and four civilians in the Bawku Mu­nicipality of the Upper East Region of the country.

Even though no one has been able to link the killings to the age-old Mamprusi-Ku­sasi conflict in the area, some suggestions blame all unpleasant incidents there to the conflict.

This makes it easy to believe that the end of the conflict seems not to be in sight because there are incessant incidents related to it.

Observers of the conflict would find it difficult to pin-point a year in its history when no related incident occurred.

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Some of us are so much wor­ried that Bawku, now a cosmo­politan settlement, cannot have the peace to allow residents and others to explore its potentiali­ties for both personal gains and its progress and, for that matter, national development.

For instance, Bawku is a major market centre close to Togo to the east and Burkina Faso to the north, meaning that people across its two international borders can easily trade with the country if the place enjoys peace and tranquillity.

Already some people from various parts of the country and even some foreigners have made Bawku their home and these and others are contributing to the de­velopment of the commer­cial community.

The factions in the Bawku conflict should therefore take into account the stake the entire country and even the international community have in the development of Bawku and ensure the amicable solution of the conflict.

A lot is recorded about the histories of both the Kusasis and the Mamprusis and equally a lot has been said about who did or did not do what for which the conflict rages.

One thing we believe in is that there can be all the mediations in the conflict to no avail except the Kusasis and the Mamprusis agree to settle or bury their differ­ences.

We, therefore, appeal to the factions in the conflict to ease the entrenched posi­tions.

In fact, the incessant un­rest, killing of innocent peo­ple and the destruction of property in the Bawku area compromise the security of the entire country.

It is also worrying the country has to waste its scarce resources on maintain­ing peace there because of a conflict that can be resolved amicably.

Have we all thought of how destablising it is for people who love their land and probably have no hand in the conflict to be killed, injured or forced out to be internally-displaced?

Another worrying issue is that of people undermining the efforts of those seeking peace and tranquillity in the area.

Imagine that just last week, a man, Osman Awudu, 45, was shot dead in Bawku in an inci­dent, which, according to police source, could be linked to the chieftaincy dispute in the area.

Ironically, the shooting occurred when the Upper East Regional Minister, Stephen Yakubu, and the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) members were at a meeting with opinion leaders of factions in the conflict, to find solution to the problem.

Let us all help to resolve the ever-raging Bawku conflict for all the benefits.

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