General News of Wednesday, 22 February 2017
A security analyst, Nana Owusu Sekyere, has observed that the number of unresolved chieftaincy disputes across the country is not only frightening but also poses a security threat to the entire nation.
As a way forward, he suggested that the government and security agencies should place a premium on identifying, detecting and curbing chieftaincy disputes in the country.
Mr Sekyere stressed that the increase in chieftaincy disputes across the country required a thorough national debate for a sustainable solution.
325 unresolved disputes
It will be recalled that during his ministerial vetting, the Minister of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, Mr Samuel Kofi Dzamesi, revealed that there were 325 unresolved chieftaincy disputes across the country, noting that the Bimbilla chieftaincy dispute would only add up to the number of unresolved chieftaincy disputes.
Weakens social cohesion
Speaking to the Daily Graphic in an interview last Saturday, Mr Sekyere said it was not only a frightening statistics but it also threatened the integrity of the whole chieftaincy institution, questioned its relevance in the country, weakened social cohesion and halted economic activities of communities which were plagued with chieftaincy disputes.
He said based on the fact that security affected everything and it was also critical to socio-economic and political development, there was the need to pay serious attention to it.
Additionally, he said, government must be guided to consider every chieftaincy institution as a possible “flashpoint” for insecurity.
“Government must commit huge sustainable resources of financial nature, logistics and human capital to aid in this regard, in order to make Ghana a better place to be,” he advised.
He also said the government must do more beyond providing solutions and put in place systems through the security agencies to identify, detect, analyse and foil the resurrection of disputes.
“The gravity of these chieftaincy disputes do have a telling effect on society and our nation as a whole. Largely, where there are loss of lives, family bonds are lost as well. Again, family ties weaken and a new chapter of uncertainty heralds those affected,” he stated.
He further noted that the government must design an exclusive contingency system or rapid response unit to monitor chieftaincy activities while documenting activities that could pose a threat in the future, adding that traditional institutions must be educated to uphold their integrity so as to continuously wield the needed authority to mediate appropriately when necessary.