Mr Mark Owen Woyongo, the Minister of Defense, has said the Northern Region would continue to wallop in abject poverty if the people in the area do not eschew conflicts that were drawing back the development of the area.
He said if the people in the area do not find lasting solutions to the protracted disputes and surrender themselves to peace and reconciliation, development would continue to elude them because resources meant for development would always be diverted to maintain peace.
Mr Woyongo said this in Tamale on Thursday during a courtesy call on the Northern Regional Minister as part of his two-day tour of the Region to interact with some chiefs and inspect military installations.
He expressed regret that the people of the north resorted to arms in the least provocation saying, “There are several ways of resolving misunderstandings instead of arms”.
The Minister called on the general public to assist in the peace efforts by promptly report to the security agencies of any suspected persons and crimes in order to make the area more governable.
Mr Woyongo also expressed worry about the poor residential accommodations for military officers across the country and said there were measures being put in place to address the problem.
He said poor maintenance culture was one of the challenges affecting poor accommodation of the military and urged them to take periodic maintenance to ensure fitting facilities.
Mr Woyongo said very soon the Airforce Training Center would be relocated to the Northern Region and would therefore aid the development of the aviation industry.
Alhaji Mohammed Limuni Muniru, the Northern Regional Minister, commended the Defense Minister for embarking on such a mission and applauded the military command in the region for their quick interventions during crisis and requested a military helicopter to be based in Tamale to deal with emergency situations rapidly.