PresidentJohn Dramani Mahama has appealed to the chiefs in the three regions of the north to collaborate with him to fashion out measures to bring a lasting peace to the chieftaincy disputes in Dagbon and Bawku.
He said it did not matter whether they were Abudus or Andanis, Kusasis or Mamprusis, and that what the north needed was peace to be able to develop the area and move the people out of poverty.
He said the resolution of chieftaincy disputes in the north, which the late President John Evans Atta Mills had championed, would be a glowing tribute in his memory.
President Mahama made the appeal Friday at the Castle, Osu, when members of the Northern, Upper West and Upper East Regional Houses of Chiefs called on him to commiserate with him on the demise of President Mills and to congratulate him on his elevation to the office of the President.
Later in the day, a delegation from the Asanteman Council and members of the Brong Ahafo Regional House of Chiefs also called on President Mahama at the Castle, Osu, to express their condolence on the passing on of President Mills and congratulate him on his assumption to the office of the President.
The President said the late Professor Mills was committed to seeing to the resolution of the chieftaincy disputes in Dagbon in the Northern Region and Bawku in the Upper East Region.
He said the late President Mills had on several occasions sent national security chiefs to Dagbon and Bawku to help find a lasting solution to the chieftaincy disputes.
President Mahama said the absence of absolute peace in the north due to chieftaincy disputes had denied the area of the needed development.
The President, therefore, asked the people in the north to iron out their differences and forge a united force to bring about development in the area and bridge the development gap between the north and the south.
“Help me to solve the conflicts and close the poverty gap between the north and the south,” he entreated the people of the north.
President Mahama said the late President Mills was committed to creating jobs and reducing poverty in the north, and indicated that it was for that reason that he introduced the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA).
The President said the late President Mills had enjoyed support from the north and recalled that the late President was received with pomp and pageantry when he went there to inaugurate projects during his regional tour earlier this year.
He announced that Cabinet had approved a decision to allow Barclays Bank to take up financing the eight regional hospitals in which the Upper Regions were beneficiaries.
President Mahama, then Vice-President in 2010 cut the sod for the construction of the hospitals, but due to financial constriants the project could not start.
However, at his maiden Cabinet meeting last week, it was agreed that Barclays bank should take that charge and ensure that the project was completed.
In a speech read on his behalf, the Overlord of Gonjaland, Yagbonwura Tutumba Boresa Sulemana Jakpa II, who led the delegation of the Northern Regional House of Chiefs, described the late President Mills as a peaceful, tolerant, humble and God-fearing leader.
He said the late President Mills had extended a lot of projects, including schools, hospitals and roads to the north, and expressed the commitment of the chiefs to support President Mahama to continue with the good work started by the late President.
The Asanteman Council described the late President Mills as an astute and dedicated politician who always served his people
with humility honesty.
Eulogising the late President, the Mamponghene Daasebre Osei Bonsu II, who spoke on behalf the Asantehene Osei Tutu II
said ”It is a pity that such a good and illustrous son of Ghana and Africa has passed on.”
He expressed the belief that the Lord Almighty would take care of him and give him a resting place.
Daasebre Osei Bonsu used the opportunity to appeal to President Mahama, to sustain the level of rule of law and good
governance that the late President had cherished greatly.
Upper East Region
The Sekote Naaba, who led the delegation from the Upper East Region, said “a great son of our motherland had fallen”
He said the President had endeared himself well in all fields of his endeavours and asked the Lord to give President Mahama a cool heart to continue the good works the former President had left.
Upper West Region
Naa Dena Gore who led the delegation from the Upper West Region, commended the laudable projects began by the late President
and expressed the strong optimism that they would be completed by President Mahama.
The leader of the Brong Ahafo Regional House of Chiefs, Nana kweku Atekye II, paid glowing tribute to the late President and appealed to President Mahama to ensure that the December elections pass off successfully.