Dagbon protests: New region will not affect traditional boundaries – Dan Botwe
The Regional Reorganisation Minister has said the proposal to create new regions will not affect traditional boundaries but will only re-demarcate administrative boundaries.
Dan Kweku Botwe said it is wrong for people to assume that once a geographical area owes allegiance to a particular ethnic group, they cannot be in another region.
“It is not supported by the current facts on the ground because we have many people from different regions who owe allegiance to other chiefs or kings in other regions,” he said.
He noted that although he has explained the confusion the issues have created to people on several occasions, some people still have problems with it.
Mr Botwe’s comments follow a protest by the youth of Dagbon in the Northern Region hitting the streets to protest the inclusion of Chereponi District in the proposed North East Region.
Spokesperson of the youth, Mubarak Osman, told Joy News they as well as the Dagbon Traditional Council are highly opposed to the move.
“The request by the Nayiri that Chereponi [currently under Dagbon Traditional Council] should be released to be part of the new region was openly opposed to by the Traditional Council when they met in Yendi,” he said.
In response, Mr Botwe said the protests have come to the ministry’s attention but the Commission of Inquiry did quite an extensive work in justification for the creation of new regions.
“There are documents in my office from the chiefs and leaders of Chereponi wanting to be part of the North East Region,” he disclosed.
The Minister said there are always people who will disagree and choose to display their dissent with a protest like the youth did on Tuesday.
He recounted an incident where a chief threatened not to allow people to register to take part in a referendum in Cherepone over the move but the exercise ended up with the biggest turn out for registration.
Mr Botwe said the decision should not be left to some selected few to make.
“That is why the Constitution says that people should vote…I am sure the Constitution never said 100 per cent because there are going to be people who will say no,” he said.
He said there is no way protests of any kind will affect the upcoming referendum on December 27.