Karaga
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The Member of Parliament (MP) for Karaga, Mr Alhassan Sualihu Dandaawa, has appealed to the National Disaster Management Organisation (NAMDO) to go to the aid of about 280 residents of Bagurugu in the Karaga District in the Northern Region whose houses were burnt during a conflict in the area.

Some armed youth raided the Fulani community on August 23, this year and burnt down many of the houses.

The attack was precipitated by a confrontation between a Fulani herder and a local farmer over a damaged rice farm in the village.

The farmer reportedly led two others into the Fulani settlement and attacked the herder, whom he accused of allowing his cattle to enter the rice farm.

Current situation

Almost three weeks after the incident, the victims, including women and children, continue to sleep in the open, at the mercy of the weather.

Speaking to the Daily Graphic, Mr Dandaawa said although calm had been restored to the area, the victims were enduring hardships, especially with accommodation.

"The situation is so sad because we are in the rainy season and it rains almost every day and these people have no place to lay their heads.

We appeal to NADMO to at least go and put up tents for them.

“The Karaga District Office of the NADMO went and took inventory of the victims and that was all it did.

The NADMO Regional Office said it had no means of getting tents for the victims and was waiting for support from the national office.

Meanwhile, the people are suffering," he stressed.

Effect of conflict

Mr Dandaawa said he, together with other key stakeholders, had engaged both parties in the disturbances to help bring lasting peace to the community for development projects to continue.

"The conflict has affected an electrification project that was about to start in the community last week.

The contractor could not move to site and had to wait until everything went down," he said.

He also said information making the rounds that the Fulanis were foreigners in the area was not true.

"The Fulani community at Bagurugu has been here from as far back as1960 and majority of them were born here.

They are Ghanaians and have all the documents that any native has — they vote during elections and engage in other national exercises," he said.

Support

In a separate interview, the General Secretary of Tabital Pulaaku International Ghana, an international association of Fulanis, Alhaji Yakubu Musah Barry, said the failure of NADMO to respond to the plight of the people was worrying.

"I have placed a number of phone calls and text messages to the Director-General of NADMO, Mr Abu Ramadan, but he is not responding.

The situation is getting out of hand because it keeps raining and the people are suffering,” he said.

He commended Mr Dandaawa and the District Chief Executive for the area, Mr Alhassan Yabdoo, for the pivotal role they played in calming down the situation and supporting the victims in various ways.

"Mr Yabdoo promised the Fulani community to rebuild their homes and also make sure that all documents lost, such as birth certificates, voter ID cards, National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) cards and passports, are replaced as soon as possible, and that he will take up the cost with immediate effect," Alhaji Barry said.