Residents of the Doba Traditional Area in the Upper East Region have commended authorities for the swift intervention that has helped address the issue of brutalities by Soldiers enforcing a curfew in the area and Kandiga.
The residents said ever since the incidents of assaults were reported to authorities, actions including condemnations have been taken and there have not been new recorded incidents.
The residents, who could previously not come out from their homes early in the mornings without getting harassed by the security operatives, said there has been great improvement.
A resident of the area and chairman of communications of the Doba Youth Association, Anontara Asakiya Clement, who made this known in an interview with GhanaWeb during a presser on the recent disturbances involving the two areas, said this improvement in the enforcement of the curfew has boosted the people’s trust in the security services which was shrinking.
He explained; “Ever since our Honourable MP and other well-meaning stakeholders spoke and complained about the brutalities, we have not had incidences of the military beating people up. There has been an improvement. Now, we don’t get them (Soldiers) going into people’s houses to beat them when they sit in front to receive fresh air in the mornings.
"We are in an environment where the weather is extremely hot. So the people would usually come out in the mornings to catch the early morning breeze before the sun comes out which they could not do when the brutalities were occurring. But things have improved very well now, the people are happy and now have confidence in the security”.
He mentioned that though they were not happy about the imposition of restriction of movement in the area, which brought about the military assaults, they are however glad the curfew has help save lives and property.
Asked if the community would take legal action against the military for the brutalities, especially the most recent one involving two minors aged between 11 and 13 years, Mr. Anontara said “the community is yet to decide on that and it’s never too late”.
Politicians and the conflict
Mr. Anontara, who carried the collective voice of the Doba Traditional Area, used the opportunity to caution politicians against playing politics with the dispute.
He said the dispute is purely land litigation case between Doba and some settlers from Kandiga, adding that it would be inappropriate for any political figure to ride on it for political gains.
“Like I mentioned in my statement earlier, this is purely a land litigation case between us and some settlers from Kandiga. So, we are cautioning all politicians to stop and stay away from playing politics in this matter. We won’t allow any politician to use this dispute for their individual political benefits”.
“I also want to add that the accusations on the MCE of the Kasena-Nankana Municipality, Mr. Aduum Williams and the Regional Minister, that they lend support to the people of Doba in relation to the disturbances are not true and only meant to divert the public attention from the real issues. They have not supported the people of Doba in any form and we wish to dismiss such allegations without proof”. He stressed.
Doba commitment to peace
The communications chair reiterated the commitment of the Doba Traditional Area to the path of peace and justice. He said the area will cooperate with authorities and the security agencies in finding lasting solutions to the age-long dispute.
He appealed to the security agencies to take particular note of characters who would cause trouble and hold them responsible if there are disturbances in the areas in the future.
Mr. Anontara called on government, as part of efforts to peacefully settle the impasse, to set up a powerful Commission of Inquiry of serious personalities including chiefs. He said such a commission would identify the hurdles for an amicable resolution that would bring finality to the dispute.
“We call on government to set up a powerful commission of inquiry of serious personalities including chiefs to look into the impasse for a peaceful settlement once and for all”.