THE ASANTEHENE, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has started the traditional processes and dialogue to help restore lasting peace at Bawku in order to protect human lives and properties in the now volatile area.
Behind the scenes, the Asante King has started meeting the various factions and stakeholders in the Bawku chieftaincy crisis separately at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi, where he had listened to their side of the case.
The various factions, Otumfuo said, have also submitted documents supporting their case for him to study, ahead of a possible face-to-face meeting of the factions at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi at a yet-to-be-announced date.
Otumfuo, who successfully led a team of eminent chiefs to ensure lasting peace during the Dagbon chieftaincy crisis, was speaking when the Minister of Chieftaincy, Asamoah Boateng, paid a courtesy call on him on Wednesday.
“Bawku, I have started talking separately to the various factions in the chieftaincy issue in that area at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi here, and so far everything has been going on smoothly behind the scenes.
“Even though I’m yet to assemble all the various factions for a meeting for them to tell their side of the story, the initial separate talks with them, has been positive so far and I hope we shall have peace in Bawku, eventually.
“So far, I have been able to meet and talked separately to my own brother the Nayiri, the Bawku Naba, Mamprusi royals and other major stakeholders in the case at the Manhyia Palace and the signs are positive,” he said.
According to Otumfuo, “Those with documents to support their case have submitted them to me to study before a grand peace meeting at a later date, where the various factions would openly tell their side of the issue for peace to prevail.”
The Asantehene promised that the Bawku chieftaincy case would be resolved peacefully without bias so that in end, the various feuding parties would see the need to smoke the peace pipe and work together to develop Bawku.
He, however, expressed concern about recent reports of shootings and violence in Bawku, appealing to the feuding parties to lay down their weapons and embrace dialogue and mediation to resolve the case.
“I’m appealing to the people of Bawku to put down their guns since it would only lead to disaster and deepen hardship and poverty in the area. They should rather embrace peace and dialogue,” the Asantehene pleaded.
According to Otumfuo, at the appropriate time, the various factions and stakeholders would be called to meet at the Manhyia Palace for a grand peace talks, adding that “I will invite you, the Minister of Chieftaincy, to that meeting.”
The Chieftaincy Minister expressed concern about how conflicts like the Bawku case usually drains the national coffers, saying “if I tell you the money government is spending at Bawku, you will be shocked”.
He lauded the Asantehene for accepting to intervene to help restore lasting peace and unity in Bawku, and urged the chiefs to support him to succeed as minister.
FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi
Pix saved as Asantehene in 2023