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Friday, March 19, 2010

Heads must roll in Asanteman,Techiman crisis

Dr. Kwesi Annin.
Dr. Kwesi Annin.
A security expert at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training centre has blamed the near escalation of ethnic violence between the Ashantis and Brong Ahafo to a security failure.

According to Dr Kwesi Annin both the District and Regional Security Councils failed in detecting early warning signals largely to the lack of effective intelligence gathering.

Three people died following clashes between the people of Tuobodom and their counterparts in Techiman -all in the Brong Ahafo region, as a result of kidnap of the Tuobodom chief, Nana Baffour Asare by body guards of the Techiman chief.

Nana Asare is said to have pledged his allegiance to the Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, much to the chagrin of the Techiman chief, Oseadeeyo Akumfi Ameyaw.

He then ordered the kidnap of Nana Asare over an alleged assassination attempt and handed him over to the police.

Incensed with the actions of the Techiman chief, the Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu waded into the controversy with an angry outburst, threatening to kidnap the Techiman chief in a like manner, if government failed to take action against him, for kidnapping an installed chief of a traditional council.

Otumfuo’s outburst brought the two traditional councils, the Ashanti-Techiman, to the brink of war and blood-shed after the youth on either side promised to defend their territorial integrity if it was challenged.

Government’s intervention appeared to have eased tensions, at least for now, but Dr.Kwesi Annin believes the situation ought not to have come this far.

He told Joy News’ Evans Mensah both the political and security heads in the Brong Ahafo region slept on the job and agreed with the call by the Asantehene that heads must roll.

He expressed regrets that Ghanaians are beginning to accept that loss of lives, provided is limited, is legitimate, adding, one loss of life is a significant embarrassment to government in the eyes of the international community.

Dr Annin admonished government to separate criminal activities from chieftaincy issues and punish perpetrators to serve as a deterrent to others who capitalize on chieftaincy disagreements to unleash mayhem.

He called for consistency and setting up of clear standards in resolving chieftaincy issues, adding the government would not have acted in the same manner it did in the case of the Asantehene, if the threats had come from another chief.

Story by Nathan Gadugah/Myjoyonline.com/Ghana

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