General News of Saturday, 29 September 2018
The Western Regional Security Council (WRSC) has banned three coastal communities from celebrating this year’s Kundum Festival.
The council has also directed that security presence be maintained at Apremdo to avoid further disturbances since tension was still high.
The decision was arrived at after an emergency meeting of the council last Thursday.
This followed last Wednesday’s violent clashes triggered by disagreements over the celebration of the Kundum Festival by the chiefs and people of Apremdo.
The violence, that was fuelled by a chieftaincy dispute in the area, led to acid and machete attacks, resulting in some of the victims sustaining varying degrees of injury, including acid burns. A house was also set ablaze in the process.
The number of injured persons receiving treatment at the hospital has since increased to five, while those in critical condition have been transferred to the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital.
According to the Western Regional Police Public Relations Officer, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Ewuraabena Adiku, the directives by the WRSC would be fully implemented to ensure safety.
She said the festival, which was a time-tested tradition, usually involved rituals such as stool cleansing, appeasement of the gods, ancestral prayers, drumming and dancing which should not have led to any violence.
Ms Adiku added that the festival was normally celebrated in some coastal areas in the region. She, however, indicated that it was being marred at some of the communities this year due to chieftaincy disagreements.
The officer said those arrested over the violence by the Kwesimintsim District Police Command were being prepared for court as the police intensified investigations into the disturbances.
Asked why the other two coastal communities of Asseke and Whindo were also banned from celebrating the festival, she explained that those communities also had existing chieftaincy issues to grapple with, hence the need to take precautionary measures.