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Rehabilitation of Gbewaa Palace

2009-05-21 22:02:04
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Gbewaa Palace
The Northern Regional Minister, Stephen Sumani Nayina, who is currently under pressure from the Abudu Royal Gate of the Dagbon Chieftaincy Divide to resign, yesterday found himself wanting when he was asked by the media in Tamale to state whether it was the Minister or the Regional Security Council (REGSEC), who had the power to order the rehabilitation of the ‘Katini duu’, one of the five compounds within the Gbewaa Palace in Yendi.

The embattled Minister, also the former Northern Regional Director of the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, could not also give a precise answer to the media as to whether the Committee of Eminent Chiefs headed by the Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, was duly informed about the REGSEC decision to allow the Royal Andani Family, led by the Kampakuya Naa to carry out the rehabilitation works.

At a counter press conference to react to the earlier one called by the Royal Abudu Family in Tamale on Tuesday, Mr. Sumani Nayina, also the Chairman of the REGSEC said the decision to allow the Andanis to carry on with rehabilitation works at the Gbewaa Palace was a collective one taken by the REGSEC.

“REGSEC deliberated on the issue and in consultation with the people on the ground, they gave them the go ahead. So if it was anything against the Otumfuo’s roadmap I’m sure the Yendi Municipal Security Committee would have drawn our (REGSEC) attention to it, but they didn’t, so we concluded that it was not part of the roadmap.

Apart from this, the house (Katini duu) was fast deteriorating, and what is important is that as both past Chiefs of Abudus and Andanis were buried there, the rehabilitation of the place is not a credit to anybody, but for both gates.

And why do you think a heritage like that should be allowed to rot because of political expediency,” these are the exact words of Mr. Nayina in response to the question by the media.

Nayina also noted that the decision to provide security for the rehabilitation of the Katini duu (Royal Mausoleum) was not taken by him alone, as alleged by the Abudus, but by the whole REGSEC members.

According to him, the REGSEC had no business in meddling in Chieftaincy matters but would be swift to intervene and deal with any situation that would endanger the peace and security in the area.

He also reiterated REGSEC’s position to remain neutral in the Dagbon Chieftaincy dispute and to support all negotiations by the government and the Committee of Eminent Chiefs to bring sustainable peace to Dagbon.

Mr. Nayina affirmed that the Regent of Dagbon, Kampakuya Naa, on May 3rd 2009, wrote a letter to REGSEC indicating their preparedness to undertake renovation works and that the “customary elders concerned with the maintenance of the Royal Mausoleum had been duly notified”.

The REGSEC, in response, tasked the Yendi Municipal Security Committee to contact the relevant stakeholders including the Kuga-Naa, a principal Elder of the Abudu Gate.

The Minister, therefore, described as big surprise to the REGSEC, when a press conference was organised by the Abudus, “ostensibly to give the whole rehabilitation exercise a political twist.

Mr. Nayina, however, said that the REGSEC would deal swiftly and decisively with any person or group of persons who dare to take the laws into their own hands for their selfish, parochial and political agenda.

It would be recalled, however, that the Royal Abudu Family on Tuesday held an emergency press conference to mount pressure on the Northern Regional Minister, Stephen Sumani Nayina to immediately revoke his recent orders for the renovation of the “Katini duu”, a compound within the Gbewaa Palace in Yendi.

According to the Abudu family, the unilateral renovation of the Gbewaa Palace sanctioned by the Regional Minister was a clear violation of the clause “I” of the Dagbon Peace Roadmap initiated by the Otumfou’s Committee of Eminent Chiefs.

They therefore, appealed to President John Evans Atta Mills to withdraw Mr. Nayina and appoint a neutral and matured politician to man the region.

The Abudus alleged that they had credible information to the effect that the renovation of the Katini duu was in line with a grand plan by the Andani Royal Family to perform “all funerals of chiefs under the jurisdiction of the Kampakuya Naa to pave the way for the substantive chiefs to occupy the relevant skin”.


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