The Kusaug traditional council, has taken a swipe at what it described at the complicit posture of Nayire, regarding the current disturbances in Bawku.
In what appears like I-am-fed-up press conference read by the long serving secretary to the Bawku Naba who doubles as the president of the Kusaug traditional overlord, Naba Thomas Abila, stated that “Bawku is not part of Mamprugu” and that the Nayire should stay away as far as matters of Bawku is concern.
The council added that its deeply saddened over the recent violence that erupted in the Bawku Municipality. Naba Asigri Abugrago Azoka II, stated that the recent conflict was needless and disgusting.
Below is the press release read by Thomas Abilla:
STATEMENT BY KUSAUG TRADITIONAL COUNCIL ON THE RECENT VIOLENCE IN BAWKU AND PROPOSALS FOR LASTING PEACE.
Ladies and gentlemen of the media, we greet you and we welcome you warmly, on behalf of the Bawku-Naba, the Zugraan of Kusaug and President of the Kusaug Traditional Council Asigri Abugrago Azoka II.
The Kusaug Traditional Council, under the leadership of the Zugraan, has called you today, to address the Ghanaian people through your respected medium and to put forward our views on the recent happenings in Bawku and its environs.
The Zugraan and the whole of the Kusaug Traditional Council is disgusted, dismayed and deeply saddened by the recent violence that erupted in Bawku, leading to the loss of precious lives and the destruction of property. These losses were needless to say the least.
On behalf of the Zugraan and the Kusaug Traditional Council, we express our profound gratitude to the President of the Republic of Ghana and his national security architecture for being swift in their response and for restoring some peace to our beloved Bawku. We also want to recognize and appreciate in a very special way, the security personnel who have put their lives on the line to give us some peace. May our ancestors and God almighty protect you and deliver you from harm.
THE RECENT CONFLICT IN BAWKU
Ladies and gentlemen, Bawku had been very peaceful for years, until sometime in December of last year when a group of reckless, evil minded people with a complete disregard for human life, attempted to bring Bawku down on its knees. This group, is the minority group of tribal bigots known as Mamprusis in Bawku.
Before December of last year, there had been consistent efforts by unknown and faceless mamprusi people who took to social media to malign, insult, denigrate and provoke the Kusasi and question our authority and ownership of Bawku in particular and Kusaug in general.
Notable among the social media handles is one operated by an evil minded and faceless individual known as “Bawku Links” on Facebook. Some other evil and irresponsible characters have used social media to prop up, encourage, delude and incite mamprusi youth in Bawku into believing that they have a stake or claim to the Bawku skin and that they should take up arms.
Of recent memory, is the activities of an irresponsible and headless man under the name and style, Naa Tampuri. He claims he is an elder of the Nayiri and we believe him to be. His activities have largely contributed to the clashes in Bawku, and continues to threaten the fragile peace in Bawku. This Naa Tampuri, took to social media and made very dangerous, baseless and incendiary claims to the Bawku skin and encouraged the mamprusis in Bawku to perform the funeral of a certain Adam Zangbeo, a mamprusi man who died some 40years ago and whose final adua was done according to Islamic rites, a faith he practiced in his life time.
Naa Tampuri and his cohorts variously threatened the peace of Bawku and followed through with their purported claim of performing the funeral of a man he claims was chief of Bawku and in the process brought the harm and loss that the good people of Bawku have suffered. We condemn Naa Tapuri and his conspirators in no uncertain terms. The blood of the innocent people who lost their lives are on his head. Shame on him and all those who encourage him.
We applaud the security services for arresting he and his cohorts and putting them before the law courts. Let justice be done.
On the basis of these facts, we can state without any fear of contradiction that the recent violence in Bawku was planned, orchestrated and executed by the mamprusis in Bawku, with support and encouragement from Nalerigu.
THE BAWKU SKIN
Following the recent violence in Bawku, we have heard various bizarre claims about the Bawku skin and its occupant. We have also heard a certain nameless man who claims to be an elder of the Nayiri asserting that the Bawku skin has not been adjudicated upon and calling on government to set up a committee to delve into the Bawku chieftaincy issues akin to what happened in Dagbon.
We reject this call on government to set up any committee to probe Bawku chieftaincy issues entirely! And we do so for two major good reasons;
First, the mamprusis have shown by their actions that they do not respect legal and due processes in resolving issues and they have demonstrated this conduct for more than 50 years. These are the facts;
1. In 1957 a committee of enquiry made up of three eminent persons; Opoku Afari, Nana Agyeman Badu and Lori Kanto, was set up by governor Listowel to enquire into the claim of Abugrago Azoka I that he was validly selected and enskinned as the legitimate chief of Bawku. That committee made their findings of fact in favour of the Kusasis. The Mamprusis have failed to respect and abide the findings of the Governor’s committee report.
2. The Court of the Appeal in 1958 (the highest court in Ghana then) upheld the findings of the Afari committee report in favour of the Kusasis. The Mamprusis have failed to respect and abide the ruling of the Court of Appeal.
3. In 2003, the Supreme Court of Ghana, declined the Mamprusis leave to apply to it under articles 270 and 277 of the 1992 constitution. The Mamprusis have refused to respect and abide the ruling of the Supreme Court.
4. In December 2021, the Republic secured an injunction in the Circuit Court, Bawku, restraining the Mamprusis from performing the purported funeral of their purported late chief. The Mamprusis defied the orders of the court and went ahead with the purported funeral and the result is what is before us today.
We hope we have demonstrated to you that it is not necessary for government to waste scarce resources in setting up any commission or committee of enquiry because these mamprusi bunch will not respect any outcome less what will excite their over bloated egos.
Second, there is no similarity between the happenings in Dagbon and the arrogant claims of the Mamprusis in Bawku. There are no two Kusasi gates in Bawku who are fighting over who should be the chief. What exist in Bawku is an apartheid mindset by arrogant and ego infested Mamprusis who claim that they must be chiefs in Bawku and rule over Kusasis on Kusasi land. The Kusasis and the Mamprusis are not same people. We do not speak the same dialect and our beliefs are not the same. Nowhere in Ghana does one ethnic group rule over the other in their own land, and we will not make Bawku and Kusaug an exception.
THE NAYIRI IS COMPLICIT IN THE CRISIS IN BAWKU
Ladies and gentlemen, over the years, we have respected and refrained from drawing the Nayiri into the awkward and ego infested claims of the Mamprusis in Bawku. We have always erroneously thought that the Nayiri is peace loving and that he will call his prodigal sons in Bawku to order. We have been mistaken.
We now have reason and we are very firm in our minds that the claims of the Mamprusis in Bawku is with the active encouragement of the Nayiri and his elders. The Nayiri is complicit in the claims of his people in Bawku and we call him out for same. We have all seen people mass up in his palace reading press releases and making claims to the Bawku skin. We are not swayed or convinced by his purported and veiled calls for peace in Bawku.
To this end, we wish to send this simple and straightforward message to him;
a) that Bawku is not part of Mamprugu,
b) that he is equal in status to the Zugraan,
c) that if he is indeed peace loving, he should immediately call his strayed sons in Bawku to order and let them know they have no claims to the Bawku skin.
We respect the Nayiri and want to coexist with his sons, after all, we also have sons in Mamprugu, but we will not be taken for granted!
PROPOSALS FOR PEACE
We have always been a peace-loving people and our conduct over years has shown same. The Mamprusis in Bawku are our nephews and nieces and we do not wish harm to come to them. Their fathers did not come to Bawku with women and we gladly gave them our sisters in marriage. We are therefore desirous of living in peace with the mamprusis and any other ethnic group in Bawku and the whole of Kusaug.
In furtherance of that we make the following proposals;
i. That the Mamprusis in Bawku forsake forthwith, their claims to the Bawku skin.
ii. The security should arrest and prosecute anyone who threatens the peace of Bawku or contravenes the measures put in place by the security to ensure peace. Such persons should be treated purely as law breakers without more.
iii. We pledge our full support to the government and the security and promise to corporate fully with them in their investigations and measures put in place to ensure peace in Bawku and Kusaug.
The Zugraan and the Kusaug Traditional Council thank you most sincerely for attending to us. We urge you to be fair and balanced in your reportage and contribute your parts to the peace efforts.
We wish you a peaceful and prosperous new year.
KUSAUG TRADTIONAL COUNCIL.