The Eastern Regional Security Council (REGSEC) has reactivated ‘Operation Cow Leg’ in Kwahu and its environs to check the activities of nomadic Fulani herdsmen whose cattle have been destroying farms.
104 men and six officers drawn from the Military, Police and Immigration Services were deployed to Fanteakwa, Tease, Donkorkrom and Dwerebiase to ensure peaceful co-existence between the farmers and the Fulani herdsmen.
The Chairman of REGSEC and Eastern Regional Minister, Antwi Boasiko-Sekyere, said this during the launch of “Operation Cow Leg” at Dwerebiase in the Kwahu East District on Monday.
He said the operation had become necessary due to the havoc the activities of the herdsmen and their cattle were causing in the area.
The Deputy Regional Police Commander, ACP James Abass Abaah, reminded the troops that the success of the operation would depend on their discipline, integrity, morality and how they conduct themselves.
He entreated the police officers to be each other’s keepers and make sure the bad nuts among them are reported to the appropriate authority.
ACP Abass said as a unified body their destiny is linked together so they should make sure they are not influenced by any force as a disciplined and professional body, adding that they should make sure there are no security lapses and that even if there are, they should handle them with caution.
The chiefs and people of the area welcomed the REGSEC’s decision to reactivate the ‘Operational Cow Leg’ which was launched early 2001 by the New Patriotic Party administration to deal with the menace of the Fulani herdsmen.
According to the people, due to the nefarious activities of the herdsmen, they were unable to go to their farms for fear of encountering the Fulani, who, they claimed, were always armed with sophisticated guns.
Some elders in the area also appealed to the regional minister not to make the operation a nine-day wonder but to ensure that the Fulani herdsmen were completely driven away from the area.
Scores of commuters accused the Fulani herdsmen of raping their women, killing their men who tried to stop their animals from grazing in the farms and committing other atrocities in the area.
The herdsmen were also accused of allowing their cattle to wander beyond the demarcated areas for grazing.
One of the leaders of the herdsmen, Mallam Yahaya, admitted that their cattle had been destroying farmlands in the area but was quick to add that whenever that happened, they readily paid compensations to the affected farmers.
He assured the REGSEC of their readiness to continue to co-operate with the chiefs and security services.
BY Daniel Bampoe
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