Return to negotiation table now or we take our land back- Damfa Chiefs to gov’t

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The Chiefs and people of Damfa and the adjoining communities in the La-Nkwantanang Municipality of the Greater Accra Region have urged the government to in the next two weeks, return to the negotiation table with them as started earlier to hasten the process of releasing their land back to them or they move to take their bonafide property. The affected communities include Damfa, Kweiman, Otinibi, Amrahea and Oyarifa.

At the press conference in Damfa to lay bare their concerns, the Chief of Damfa, Nii Djanie Tsulu Afutu Brempong lV said the government of Ghana in August 1970 acquired over thousand acres of land from the aforementioned communities for a ranch, Dairy Farm, but 49 years on, it has not compensated the primary owners of the land. Though the project is virtually nonfunctional, government has neither reverted the land back to the people nor paid the compensation due them.

Few years ago, the government after several petitions from the people entered into negotiation with the people by directing management of Dairy Farm to identify a suitable part of the land it can manage for the ranch and return the rest to the people in lieu of compensation, since it lacks the requisite resources to manage the entire acquisition. The final process of the negotiation which was touring the entire land to locate the suitable portion to be used for the ranch was done by the parties two weeks ago awaiting documentation.

Spokesperson for the Nii Djanie Tsulu Family of Damfa, Nii Djanie Klu speaking to atinkaonline after the presser said though the negotiation process was almost exhausted, police personnel led by the Greater Accra Regional Police Operations Commander, ACP Kwesi Fori, one civilian, Clement Djato and one Alhassan who claimed he is the secretary to the Agricultural Minister on last Sunday besieged the area with equipment and demolished over hundred houses at various stages of completion to their dismay.

According to him, but for a former Member of the Council of State during President Kuffour era who calm down the youth if the community, there would be a gun battled leading to a blood bath and loss of lives. Nii Djanie Klu therefore asked the government to reactivate the negotiation process in the next fortnight leading to the reversion of their land back to them or they mass up to take over their inheritance bequeathed to them by their forefathers.

The Chief of Amrahea, Nii Ashong Kojo lll on his part expressed shock at the incident since the government according to him, is yet to pay a dime as compensation over the land in question. The Chief however implored the youth to exercise restraint as the Elders jaw jaw with the government to determine the finality of the unfortunate occurrence and release of the land back to them.

Ghana | | Edward Sebbie