Chiefs Of Abudu And Andani Royal Gates Receive Training in Conflict Management

A two-day training programme in conflict management for 20 chiefs and 24 elders from the Andani and Abudu royal Gates has ended at Yendi in the Northern Region. It was organised by the United Nations Joint Programme on Human Security in collaboration with the Dagbon Traditional Council. Topics discussed included Human Security concept, conflict and causes of conflict, types of conflict and understanding conflict, escalation and de-escalation of conflict, conflict prevention - early warning signs, and the spectrum of conflict handling mechanisms, among others. The Programme Manager of UN Joint Human Security Programme, Mr Edward Adimazoya, stated that since December 2009 the United Nations (UN) system in Ghana and other partners had been implementing the joint Human Security Programme in selected communities in the three Northern Regions. Mr Adimazoya indicated that the programme which had the title “Enhancing Human Security Through Developing Local Capacity for Holistic Community-based Conflict Prevention in Northern Ghana,” was a joint initiative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), UNICEF, UNDP, UNIDO UNU and the World Food Programme (WFP) in close collaboration with the Government of Ghana, civil society organizations, academia and other partners. He said the three-year programme was funded by the Government of Japan through the UN Trust Fund for Human Security (UN-TFHS). “The programme targets Bawku, Yendi, Tamale and Wa which have been identified as the four conflict-prone areas in the three Northern Regions,” he said, adding that it sought to empower local institutions, communities and individuals to prevent and manage conflicts in Northern Ghana as a means to ensuring sustainable human security in the area. Mr Adimazoya indicated that the programme adopted a multidimensional approach with international components in local capacity development, conflict prevention, income generation, food security and human security concept. He said in the Yendi Municipality the priority communities included Nayilifong, Guntingle, Balogu, and Kumfong. The UN Joint Human Security Programme Field Specialist for Yendi, Mr Salifu Dammah indicated that the conflict management workshop for the chiefs of the two Gates was meant to equip them and their elders with knowledge and skills for holistic community based conflict prevention and enable them to anticipate and respond constructively and sensitively to issues of conflict in their areas. Mr Salifu stated that relationship building was no marginal activity but that it was the key in creating sustainable peace-building process. He said the theme for the training, “The more we sweat in peace, the less we bleed in war,” was very appropriate. The Yendi Divisional Police Commander, Chief superintendent Charles Damanban, expressed appreciation to the chiefs from the two royal Gates for attending the training programme in the search for peace in Dagbon. He thanked the UN Joint Programme on Human Security and the Dagbon Traditional Council for organizing the programme. In their recommendations, the chiefs appealed to the UN Joint Programme on Human Security to empower the chiefs of the two Gates to enable them to contribute effectively to the peace process. They stressed the need for the two royal Gates in the Dagbon Crisis to tone down the blame game and to seek peace. They acknowledged that in the interest of building peace and trust, chiefs of the two Gates should exchange visits regularly to improve upon communications between the two sides. The chiefs also called on the UN Joint Programme to create jobs for the youth in the conflict-prone areas to enable them to channel their energies into productive ventures.