Support Minister to resolve chieftaincy disputes

Chieftaincy disputes and conflicts have become a great hindrance to peaceful living, security and development in certain parts of the country.

Until such conflicts are resolved the country would not see the expected development because their devastation comes to derail progress made.

We know how particular chieftaincy conflicts have caused killings, internal displacements and destroyed livelihoods and property in the country.

Thus, any efforts to contain such disputes and conflicts must be hailed and supported.

Our lead story today talks of some of such efforts but it is a sweet and sour narrative.

First, it is sour because there are over 500 chieftaincy disputes and conflicts across the country 139 of which have become an albatross on the country’s security finances.

Besides, 70 per cent of all issues being handled by the Ministry of National Security are all chieftaincy disputes and conflicts.

The sweet side relates to the efforts being made to resolve the conflicts for some sanity in the affected areas in particular and the country at large.

For instance, the Minister of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, Mr Stephen Asamoah-Boateng, has disclosed in an interview that his Ministry has identified about 60 of the disputes which could be immediately resolved.

Though the 60 out of the over 500 can be described as infinitesimal, the effort is a very good start viewed against the fact that such efforts have delayed in coming and the others have been categorised under the long-term plan and activities to resolve them.

The most soothing news is that the Ministry is actively working with all stakeholders to resolve the Bawku conflict and that the roadmap to peace in Bawku could be unveiled in the first quarter of next year.

Mr Asamoah-Boateng and his team deserve a lot of commendation for all the efforts meant to resolve the existing conflicts and prevent future ones through the codification of all stools and skins and development of succession plans.

It is clear the absence of such codification and succession plans becomes the fertile ground for all manner of people to wake up and want to be chiefs all because of their connections with some traditional leaders, political clout or wealth.

Mr Asamoah-Boateng is clearly on point when he called on paramount chiefs to commit to quick resolution of disputes by constantly spelling out and applying customs and traditions required in the enstoolment or enskinment of persons.

Some paramount chiefs and certain family elders are behind most of these conflicts for selfish gains and so ignore the age-old processes to install chiefs and queens in the country.

The roles of chiefs and queens in the socio-cultural development of the country are key to its economic advancement.

Therefore, efforts to resolve chieftaincy conflicts and prevent new ones must be fully supported.

We hope that Mr Asamoah-Boateng and his team would succeed in their efforts because their success would save the country money, human and material resources expended on such conflicts.

Besides, the killings and destruction of livelihoods and property would cease.

Additionally, the people in the conflict areas would have the peace of mind to go about their various endeavours and also have sound sleep any time any day like other citizens in non-conflict communities.

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