POLITICS

Curfew in Chereponi over 2-acre conflict

Government has slapped a curfew on Chereponi district in the Northern region following two days of ethnic violence between Konkombas and Chokosis.
The curfew runs from 4 pm to 7 am, the Interior minister Ambrose Dery signed in a statement. It said the decision was based on the advice of the Northern Regional Security Council.

It has taken two reinforcements of military personnel to decrease the worst part of the violence, burning of homes and destruction of properties.
The violence is another episode of Chereponi’s checkered history of conflict over a two-acre land.

Chereponi is an area of 53,294 at last count in 2010. Some 50% of them are under 15 years and if you take 10 people aged 11 years and above, seven of them cannot read or write.
But it is in this area that the Chokosis and Bimobas are fighting over who can fish in the Kpembi river and Chokosis and Konkombas are fighting over who can use a two-acre land.
The violent replase over the past two days is between Konkombas and Chokosis. 
Northern regional minister Salifu Sa-eed said the region’s Security Council had observed assailants plan and execute their attacks late in the night and at dawn.

The curfew which kicks in after sunset is to deter movement and congregation of criminal minds, he explained. 
“The whole thing will subside if they don’t get the chance to meet in the night,” he assessed.
The minister said Chereponi is a vast area of scattered villages and communities which hampers effective police monitoring.

“Security could not be everywhere so the best thing for us is to impose the curfew,” he told Joy News Thursday.
He said the security forces had to use helicopters to move around at low levels to instil fear in the residents and discourage further crime.
“They got scared and they realised military could unleash bombs,” the minister said.

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Salifu Sa-eed said the full extent of the damage done in the district would be known by Friday.

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