The Bissa Development Association (BDA) has held it’s Zekula Poore program with a call on “neighbours” Mamprusis and Kusasis to embrace peace in Bawku, as the age-long conflict has made us “a laughing stock.”
Bissas canceled the celebration the annual Zekula Festival in Kulungungu over security concerns amid the protracted tribal conflict.
Holding a mini Zekula program in Accra on the 16th of April to commemorate the Festival, the development wing of the Bissas urgerd the feuding factions to reflect on the crisis as it has subjected Bawku to global mockery.
“Are we really fighting to scare each other, using chieftaincy or tribal reasons as excuse and after that stay together at one place.?,” the Chairman Alhaji Shaibu Guatare Zanni asked in his opening remarks at the conference.
“We should know that any day the conflict keeps on raging in Bawku, represents a match towards backwardness and primitiveness.
In this era of civilization, we cannot be seen to be killing each other over chieftaincy issues that can be resolved amicably”.
The BDA further urged the factions to dialogue to bring lasting peace to the town.
We hope that we will get to a point where we will see each other as one and interdependent and not enemies.
According to the group, the prolonged conflict has among other things hindered development in the area over the years.
Despite defending the decision not to celebrate Zekula, Chairman Gutare bemoaned the level of insecurity in the area that led to cancellation of the festival this year.
State of Nature
Renewed clashes between the two ethnic groups in November 2021 has led to the imposition of curfew on several occasions on the Upper East regional Town.
Beside the 8pm to 5am restrictions, the Government has also placed bans on riding of Motor Bikes and wearing of smocks, as security measures to crack down on miscreants.
With its debilitating effect on businesses and free movement, the BDA chairman believes Bawku is now degenerating into Hobes’ “State of Nature “, where life is among others, brutish and short.
He further appealed to the feuding faction to come to a conclusion that they cannot do away with each other.
“We should come to one irresistible conclusion that mamprusis can never do away with kusasis in Bawku, neither can kusasis ever do away with mamprusis in Bawku for thousands of years to come,” he said.
“God brought us together and God knows why he brought Kusasis, Mamprusis, Bissas, Mossis and other tribes in that holy place called Bawku.
“God didn’t intend for us to come and kill one another just because one person speaks another language and other speaks a different language.
And we all speak each other’s language anyway”
According to the BDA it is going to organise the Zekula Poore in other regions as part of moved to keep Bissas United, expressing hopes that peace will return to Bawku for them to be able to hold the main Zekula Festival next year.