The Northern Regional Security Council has ordered the suspension of the celebration of this year’s annual Damba festival in troubled areas.
The Northern Regional Minister, Salifu Saeed, told Citi News the move is to prevent clashes in the region, especially in areas including Bimbilla, Kalampor and Kafaba, where tensions are high.
The festival started on Wednesday with Tamale being the host city.
People from all walks of life including some chiefs from the Ga traditional area, are expected to participate in the festival under theme, “Promoting peace to enhance development.”
This year’s Damba festival is a significant step on the journey to the restoration of peace, unity and genuine reconciliation in the Dagbon traditional area.
The festival in the town has in the previous years resulted in violence due to the deep ethnic tensions pertaining in some of the traditional areas.
The REGSEC had earlier beefed up security at Kalampor and Kafaba near Salaga in the East Gonja district, after renewed chieftaincy clashes which has left some persons dead.
The Damba festival is celebrated by the chiefs and peoples of Nalerigu, Tamale and Wa in the Northern and Upper West Regions in the Dagomba lunar month of Damba, corresponding to the third month of the Islamic calendar, Rabia al-Awwal.
Damba is the most important festival widely celebrated by Dagombas, Gonjas, Mamprusis and Nanumbas in the Northern Region, and also Walas in the Upper West Region.
The festival commemorates the birth of the Holy Prophet of Islam, Nabi Mohammed.
By: Jonas Nyabor/citifmonline.com/Ghana