Ghanaian Chronicle

A-G DRAGGED TO HUMAN RIGHTS COURT …Over location of Binduri as district capital

Date published: September 17, 2012

Benjamine Kumbor, Attorney General

By Musah Umar Farouq

A LAW suit has been filed before the Human Rights Division of an Accra High Court by seven concerned residents of the Binduri district of the Upper East region, against the Attorney General.

The Plaintiffs are; Philip Ayamba from Zuuri, George Ndebugri (Sakpari), Lydia Fuseini (Binduri), Alhassan Adams (Binduri), Yakubu Osman (Binduri), Ndewini M. Ndebugri (Bankango) and Issah Issaka (Zuuri).

They are seeking a declaration that with the passage of the Local Government Binduri District Assembly Establishment Instrument of 2012 Legislative Instrument 2146, the Binduri District Assembly was duly created, and that per Regulation 6 of the L.I. 2146, Binduri is the district capital of the newly created Binduri District Assembly.

The Plaintiffs are also seeking a declaration that attempts to create the district capital of Binduri District outside of Binduri are unlawful, and should be declared null and void.

They want the court to direct the Government of Ghana to relocate the district capital of Binduri from Benguri or Bazua, to Binduri with immediate effect.

On the strength of the said L.I. the plaintiffs are seeking an order of perpetual injunction restraining the Government of Ghana and its agents from establishing the district capital of Binduri at any other place, apart from Binduri.

In a 43-point statement of claim filed by Egbert Faibille Jnr. of Kulendi@Law legal firm in Accra, the plaintiffs contended the Binduri township has since 1956 been a constituency of Ghana, for which citizens have since petitioned  successive government to make Binduri a district.

They said early this year, the Government of Ghana decided to create new district according to law, and consequently passed Legislative Instrument 2146, by which the Binduri District Assembly was created.

It was stated that the L.I. provided per its Regulation 6, that the Binduri District Assembly shall establish its offices at Binduri, where meetings of the Assembly shall be held.

The concerned plaintiffs explained that following the passing of L.I. 2146, a group of people from a nearby community called Bazua allegedly made moves to have the district capital relocated from Binduri to Bazua.

They plaintiffs accused Lucy Awini, the Deputy Upper East Regional Minister and with the support of the Upper East Regional Minister, Mr. Mark Woyongo, the Bawku Municipal Chief Executive, Mr. Musah Abdulai and the NDC Constituency chairman, Alhaji Kassim, of leading the group from Bazua.

The statement indicated that a number of stakeholders’ meetings were held to deliberate on the location, for the construction of temporary structures to house the newly created Assembly, but the plaintiffs have expressed their indignation at the development, since L.I. 2146 clearly provided for where the district capital should be sited.

According to the Plaintiffs, they have drawn the attention of the Minister of Local Government to the provisions of the L.I. 2146 and the existence of structures at Binduri, which could readily be converted into permanent structures without necessarily constructing temporary ones at Bazua, as the Regional Minister sought to prevail on stakeholders at a meeting.

The plaintiffs’ action has been explained by the statement of claim as necessitated by the position taken by the Upper East Regional Minister that the decision of the Bawku Naaba’s wish that the capital is located at Bazua is final and binding on all citizens of Binduri.

The Plaintiffs said notwithstanding their protest, the Binduri District Assembly was inaugurated on June 28 2012 at Benguri, while existing infrastructure at Bazua have been renovated and a signboard at Bazua visibly indicating ‘Binduri District Assembly’ erected there.

This, the Plaintiffs say is an attempt and ample evidence that the interested group of persons want to make Bazua the district capital of Binduri, which is a much bigger township than the sparsely populated townships of Bazua or Benguri, which would amount to a clear violation of the provisions of the Local Government (Binduri District Assembly) (Establishment) Instrument 2012, l. I. 2146 by the defendant.

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