Tension is mounting like a thick dark smoke beneath a heap of sawdust in the Nanton, Northern Region.
This worrying development, Today understands, stems from the reason that some aggrieved sub and divisional chiefs—backed by majority of the youth in Nanton—are demanding the immediate removal of Chief of Nanton, Zoosal-Lana Haruna Sulemana, from the Nanton skin.
In fact, forty-five out of fifty seven sub and divisional chiefs of Nanton at a news conference organised at Wovugu and addressed by the Secretary of the Chiefs, Mr. Adam Dokurugu, made a passionate appeal to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to caution the Zoosal-Lana, who is a former Northern Regional Chairman of ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) to vacate the Nanton skin for the rightful occupant, Nanton Naa Mahamudu V.
According to the aggrieved chiefs, Zoosal-Lana Haruna Sulemana, aka Arumbees, since April 2019, “with the backing of some political elements in government is holding himself as the Chief of Nanton against the approval and authorisation of the Overlord of Dagbon (Ya-Na), the appointing authority.”
They indicated that inasmuch as they cherish the prevailing peace in Dagbon and appreciate the efforts of President Akufo-Addo in restoring peace and unity in the area, they could no longer tolerate the behaviour of the Zoosal-Lana, which the claimed was creating division, mistrust, disunity and needless tension among the subjects.
Also, in a petition to President Akufo-Addo through the Regional Coordinating Council, Tamale, the chiefs said: “We write to you as father of our great nation, Ghana, to appeal to you to order the immediate removal and arrest of Zoosal-Lana Haruna Sulemana (aka Arumbees) from Nanton to pave way for the arrival of our Chief Nanton Naa Mahamadu V, to Nanton to assume duty as the legitimately enskinned Chief of the Nanton Traditional Area.”
The petition believes in President Akufo-Addo sincerity because the bold steps that led to the “landmark funerals of our beloved late Naa Mahamadu Abdulai and Naa Yakubu II was unprecedented, despite the allegations that you had a covert interest to screw the process for the benefit of the Abudu Royal Family.”
“Mr President, you demonstrated both in word and action your commitment to the Dagbon Peace Process. However, we regret to state that your commitment is not in tandem with the interest of some of your appointees. Majority of us believe you have good intentions for us, but some of your political appointees consider their personal interest more superior to your vision for Dagbon,” it added.
“Your Excellency, Zoosal-Lana is fast burning your good name and that of your government because his capabilities are well known, and he could not have conceptualised this lawlessness and impunity had it not been that your government is in office. Zoosal-Lana and his unelected supporters in sensitive government offices are displaying their crass disrespect for your commitment for Dagbon peace, the Ya-Na, and the traditions and customs of Dagbon.”
Against this backdrop, the chiefs served notice to elements in government supporting “the… Zoosal-Lana,” to back off, which also sought to undermine the promise by the current government not to interfere in the Dagbon chieftaincy matters.
“To engender peace in the entire Dagbon and avoid needless political interference in chieftaincy, we expect government and national security apparatus to expedite action in removing Zoosal-Lana from Nanton and allow our legitimately enskinned Chief, Nanton Naa Mahamadu V, to come back home to assume his rightful traditional duties for peace and development to blossom within our Traditional Area. This will give true meaning to the president’s assured neutrality of his government in Dagbon chieftaincy matters”.
The chiefs also appealed to President Akufo-Addo to order REGSEC to take the necessary security measures to facilitate the removal of the Zoosal-Lana from Nanton and the safe arrival of their legitimately enskinned Chief, Nanton Naa Mahamadu V.
They said “the people of Nanton are living in fear with the Zoosal-Lana’s thugs parading with assault weapons in the Nanton environs and mounting unauthorised road barriers at the full glare of officialdom on daily basis.”
On April 01, this year, after the performance of late Nanton Naa Sulley’s funeral, about 18 royal contenders assembled at the Gbewaa Palace to express their interest in the Nanton Skin. After rigorous traditional and customary screening and appraisal, Nanton Naa Mahamadu V was selected by the Ya-Na as the new Nanton Naa.
Story: Kwamena ANANSE