Miss Elizabeth Ohene, Minister of State at the Office of the President, on Friday explained that President John Agyekum Kufuor had to skip some of the areas he was scheduled to visit in the Northern Region because the helicopter he was using developed a fault when it went to refuel.
She said by the time another helicopter was sent from Accra it became obvious that the President could not visit Nankpanduri and Gambaga if he were to return to Tamale before nightfall- " since those helicopters are not usually flown at night".
Miss Ohene told the Ghana News Agency in Accra following report the Agency received from its correspondents to the effect the chiefs and people of Bimoba and Gambaga in the East Gonja District were highly disappointed because the President did not visit them.
The report said as early as 9am hundreds of people including chiefs from surrounding villages had gathered at Nakpanduri to meet the President on his maiden visit to the area.
The President was to have flown from Karaga to Nakpanduri but the helicopter on which he was travelling developed a fault when it went to Tamale to re-fuel.Another helicopter was called from Accra for the President to continue with the trip.
He was billed to address a durbar at Bimoba at 1200 noon but it was around 1500 hours that rumours started circulating that the President was no longer coming to Nakpanduri and that he was addressing a durbar at Nalerigu.
The people's fears were confirmed when the President's security personnel left Nakpanduri unceremoniously after which the chiefs and people also left the durbar grounds in anger.
Meanwhile another crowd had gathered at Gambaga waiting for the President, who flew over to Walewale.
The failure of the President to meet the people of the two communities has sparked off controversy, arguments and counter-arguments.
The Bimobas at Nakpanduri were of the opinion that they had been snubbed by the President, whilst the people of Gambaga, who are at conflict with the people of Nalerigu, over which of the two towns should be the district capital, are of the view that the President had taken sides.
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