The Member of Parliament for Bawku Central Mahama Ayariga has appealed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration to activate diplomatic channels with the military authorities in Burkina Faso to locate and return seven residents of the Bador and Tampizua communities in the Bawku Municipality.
In a letter addressed to the Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, on Wednesday, Mr. Ayariga said that the seven men, who are believed to have been arrested by the Burkinabe military, had crossed into the Bittu District of Burkina Faso to claim their cattle after they had been driven there.
This followed an alleged attack on nomadic herdsmen grazing the cattle of the missing men. The seven men are Abdulai Bagre, Mumuni Seidu, Issaka Nyikabo, Abu Kadir Salifu, Jebrilu Braimah, Bande Mamudu, and Bande Shaibu.
Mr Ayariga stated: “I hereby formally write to seek your assistance to locate and secure the release and return to Ghana seven residents of the communities of Bador and Tampizua in Bawku Municipality who are believed to have been arrested by the military authorities in Burkina Faso and despite every effort we have been unable to locate them and secure their return back to Ghana.”
The Bawku Central MP said that he had asked senior Ghanaian military personnel to investigate the matter, but all efforts had been unsuccessful.
He also said that he had contacted former Burkina Faso members of the ECOWAS Parliament, but they had been unable to provide any positive results.
He added that he had also tried the former Burkina Faso Members of the ECOWAS Parliament, but they had all yielded no positive results for which reason he was requesting the assistance of the Foreign Affairs Ministry.
Read the full letter below:
Missing Residents of Bawku 30th October 2023
Honourable Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey Esq.
Minister for Foreign Affairs
& Regional Integration
Accra – Ghana
REQUEST TO ASSIST LOCATE AND SECURE THE RETURN TO GHANA OF SEVEN (7) RESIDENTS OF BAWKU HELD IN BURKINA FASO
I hereby formally write to seek your assistance to locate and secure the release of seven (7) residents of the communities of Bador and Tampizua in Bawku Municipality who are believed to have been arrested by the military authorities in Burkina Faso and despite every effort we have been unable to locate them and secure their return back to Ghana.
These residents of Bawku include:
1. Abdulai Bagare
2. Mumuni Seidu
4. Abdu_Kadir Salifu
5. Jebrilu Braimah
6. Bande Mamudu
7. Bande Shaibu
They crossed over into Burkina Faso on Friday 13th of October, 2023 to Bittou District in Burkina Faso with the assistance of the Assembly Member for Kanyere a suburb of Mogande also in Bittu District in Burkina Faso. The Assembly Member is called Adamah Bidigah.
Fulani herdsmen grazed cattle belonging to the missing persons in a village called Kanyere in the Bittu District on the Burkina Faso side of the border between Bawku in Ghana and Burkina Faso. Military men came to the area and fired warning shots and the Fulani men run away and left the cattle. Two Fulani men are reported to have died in the incident. The Burkina Faso military drove the cattle to Bittu District capital (Bittu).
Subsequently, announcements were made that the owners of the cattle should come and identify them so they will hand the cattle back to them. The Assembly Man for Kanyere, Adamah Bidigah, conveyed the message of the announcement across to the Ghana side.
The missing persons took a letter of introduction from the Municipal Chief Executive of Bawku Municipality and took along to Bittu to claim the animals.
The Assembly Member for Kanyere directed them to the location of the animals. The location was identified as Nohow, a village also in the Bittu District.
The missing persons set off to the said location with the aim of identifying their cattle for retrieval. They were last seen standing with Burkina Faso military personnel on the road to Noaho village. Other claimants of cattle headed to Noaho have said they saw them standing with the Burkina Faso military personnel under circumstances that appeared as if they were being interrogated by the military personnel but everyone was afraid to interfere so they all passed them by.
The seven missing persons have since not been located. I have asked senior Ghanaian military personnel to look into the matter but all efforts have yielded no results. I have tried using former Burkina Faso Members of Parliament in the ECOWAS Parliament where I served with them and there has not been any positive results.
I therefore request the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to activate the diplomatic channels with the military authorities in Burkina Faso to locate and return the missing persons.
Please accept considerations of my highest regards.
Mahama Ayariga MP
EMBASSY OF BURKINA FASO IN GHANA
THE MINISTER FOR NATIONAL SECURITY
REGSEC, UPPER EAST REGION
MUSEC, BAWKU MUNICIPAL ASSEMBLY