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Defense minister is emboldening his tribesmen to cause security issues in the Northern Region – Dagbon youth calls

Dagomba-Konkomba tensions: Dagbon youth calls for dismissal of the Minister of Defense

The Dagomba Youth Association (DAYA) has urged President Akufo-Addo to dismiss Dominic Nitiwul, the minister of defense, for his alleged part in the escalating hostilities between Konkombas and Dagombas.

The association alleges that Nitiwul, a Konkomba and Member of Parliament for Bimbilla, is encouraging his tribesmen to undermine security in the Northern Region by continuing to serve as defense minister.

“We think that the largest threat to peace in the northern region is the Defense Minister’s ongoing residence at the Defense Ministry, Hon. Nitiwul. Since his presence there is encouraging the Konkombas to cause security issues, the President should reshuffle him. At a news conference in Tamale, Adam Baba Issifu, the national president of DAYA, made a statement.

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The press conference follows escalating hostilities between Konkombas and Dagombas. When one Magal Kuunboln claimed Dagombas were in possession of some Konkomba territories and needed to be forced to return those lands to the Konkombas, who he claimed were the original owners of those lands, tensions erupted.

His remarks prompted indignation, leading to a heated discussion between the two tribes on traditional and social media. The head of DAYA demanded Kuunboln’s immediate arrest for reportedly laying the groundwork for inter-tribal warfare between the two tribes.

In order to prevent inter-ethnic strife between the Konkombas and the Dagbamba, he said, “We wish to call for the immediate arrest of Magal Kuunboln and those responsible for the Nkpakpaando Aabomukl anonymous press release.”

Baba pleaded on Dagbamba, in particular the Dagbon youth, to refrain from disseminating similar messages in response as security worked to apprehend the war criminals.

He claimed that poverty and underdevelopment were the common enemies of the Konkombas and Dagombas, necessitating cooperation to combat them.

“We feel that rather than attacking one another, our nation’s efforts should be focused on eradicating poverty and underdevelopment. Nobody can stop Dagbon from experiencing increased social and economic development. The only thing the youth of Dagbon do is assist duty bearers and stakeholders in fostering an environment that will draw investment to the region, remarked Baba.

The Regional Security Council, National Peace Council, and traditional authorities have all been seeking to ease tensions between the two ethnic groups in recent days. Many worry that the participants are not doing enough, though.

Tamale resident Andani Alhassan remembered how similar warnings made before the 1994 Dagomba-Konkomba dispute were not taken seriously until the war started.

According to him, this precedent has led many citizens to have doubts about the ability of the state security system to defuse tensions.

The same indicators were present prior to the 1994 War, when people were banging war drums but nothing was done. The Ya Naa would summon all the Konkomba chiefs whenever things seemed to be intensifying, and they would assure him that nothing of the such would occur, but it did. Our mothers, fathers, friends, siblings, and sisters all passed away. As a result, we have made preparations since we don’t have faith in the state’s security, he said angrily.

Nearly 2,000 people are estimated to have perished in the Dagomba-Konkomba battle in 1994.


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