The Rough Road To Peace: Saluting The Dagbon Elders

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The long-awaited peace and tranquility that had eluded the good people of Dagbon for many years may be returning faster than had been imagined; and barring any unforeseen contingency, the nation will be seeing the enskinment of a brand new Ya-Na in the coming months.

The Committee of Eminent Chiefs, comprising the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Yagbonwura Tuntumba Bore Essa I, Overlord of the Gonja Traditional Area and Nayiri Naabohagu Mahami Abdulai Sheriga, Overlord of the Mamprugu Traditional Area, tasked to find a solution to the ansence of peace in Dagbon, had, after 12 years, presented a roadmap towards peace to President Akufo-Addo, and disclosed that the leadership and members of both the Andani and Abudu gates had accepted the roadmap, which would eventually lead to the enskinment of a substantive Ya-Na in Dagbon.

Per the roadmap, it had been agreed that Abudus will be given access to the Gbewa Palace to perform the final funeral rites of the late Ya-Na Mahamadu Abdulai for two weeks (December 14-28), after which the Andanis will also take their turn at the Palace to organize the funeral rites of the late Ya-Na Yakubu Andani from 4-18 January 2019.

More exciting is the news that, starting from the last Friday of the funeral of the late Yakubu Andani, four recognized elders will sit in seclusion and consult their oracle to choose a new Ya-Na. It is exciting because it means the simmering tension between the two royal factions, sparked by the 2002 clashes that led to the murder of the late Ya-Na Yakubu Andani and about 40 of his elders would be a thing of the past.

THE PUBLISHER wishes to salute the Committee of Eminent Chiefs and the youth and elders of the two feuding royal gates in Dagbon – Adani and Abudu – for finally agreeing on the way forward.

For a committee that had been sitting for 12 long years (since 2006) trying to bring peace to Dagbon, and finally meeting the nation’s expectation, we think the team deserves more than our commendation.

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Equally worthy of commendation is the determination of the youth and elders of the two gates to put the past behind them, even though the perpetrators of the March, 2002 heinous crime had not yet been arrested and punished. In our view, this is the most practical demonstration of fraternity by the descendants of the two blood brothers and founders of the Dagbon State.

The paper will also not forget the wisdom and diplomacy that former presidents John Agyekum Kufuor, John Evans Atta-Mills and John Dramani Mahama contributed to the years of discussions and brainstorming that brought us this far.

Most heart-warming in all this is the assurance given by the Asantehene that the committee was at no time put under political pressure to skew the report.

THE PUBLISHER will, however, like to share the opinion of other security experts that the absence of the Bole La Naa and the Regent of Dagbon during the presentation of the roadmap to the president is indicative of the fact that things are not entirely resolved.

We therefore call on government, the committee of eminent chiefs, the security and other stakeholders to do all they can to smoothen the remaining rough edges in the matter before the implementation of the roadmap.

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