Minister of the Interior Ambrose Dery has assured the chiefs and people of Bimbilla of the government’s commitment to restore lasting peace in the area.
He said the government was committed to ensuring that residents of Bimbilla in the Nanumba North District in the Northern Region went about their activities without any fear.
The minister, however, made it clear that the government would not interfere in chieftaincy issues in the area but would respect the customs and traditions of the people.
He gave the assurance at separate meetings with the two parties involved in the recent Bimbilla chieftaincy conflict last Tuesday at Bimbilla.
Mr Dery led a government delegation to the area to get a first-hand information on the disturbances.
The delegation included the Minister of Defence, Mr Dominic Nitiwul; Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Ms Otiko Afisa Djaba, the acting Inspector General of Police (IGP), David Asante-Apiatu, and the General Officer Commanding the Northern Command, Brigadier General Stanley Alloh.
The rest included the Northern Regional Police Commander, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP), Mr Ken Yeboah, the Commander of the Tamale Air Force Base, Group Captain Frank Hanson, and other security chiefs in the region.
Mr Dery said the adjudication of the chieftaincy issue was in the hands of the traditional authorities, particularly the Northern Region and National House of Chiefs, and the law courts.
He added that the government demonstrated its commitment in ensuring lasting peace in the current Bimbilla chieftaincy conflicts by deploying both military and police personnel to bring the issue under control and also to protect lives and property.
Mr Dery said it was worrying that lives and property had been lost in the area due to the protracted chieftaincy dispute.
He said the government would continue to protect the people in the area, particularly the regent of Nanung,Yelinbolingu-Naa Abdulai Dasana. He also pledged that all perpetrators of the conflict would be brought to book.
Mr Dery urged the two parties involved in the dispute to cooperate with the security and the government in resolving the protracted conflict.
According to him, the issue of security was a collective responsibility and, therefore, implored the parties to collaborate by providing information to the security agencies
For his part, the Regent of Nalung, Yelinbolingu-Naa Abdulai Dasana, expressed concern that since the violent conflict started in the area, no perpetrator had been prosecuted.
He therefore called on the government and the security services to ensure that all perpetrators were brought to book.
On Thursday, February 9, 2017, there was a renewed chieftaincy conflict in Bimbilla, the Nanumba North District capital that led to the death of 10 people, mostly women and children. More than 21 others sustained various injuries.
According to the police, the clashes resulted from a disagreement between two feuding factions over the alleged enskinment of a sub-chief by the regent.