I contemplated for several weeks if not months, about this article before finally making the decision to come out with it. My fear was that I might offend the gods and ancestors of dagban; or maybe face the anger of the powerful princesses from the royal gates. But with all the fears, I still convinced myself that they will all accept me as a child who is looking for nothing less than the best for the children they left behind. So I decided to say it – so even if they get angry and strike me dead, I will die fighting for the betterment of dagbang – and my name shall be remembered.
I am 99.99% sure that most of my readers were born after the events that led to the current Abudu and Andani conflict that eats deeply into the fiber of dagban development. In fact I was born after it as well! Yet, every one of us can one way or the other identify with one of the gates. Interestingly, even foreigners who have no lineage to the dagban Kingdom are now having factions within the gates.
Some marriages are entered into or shredded based on the gates of the partners. And some of us do not greet our neighbors because of the gate sovereignty! We have lost so much from the conflict, but we are yet to benefit a bit from it. I stand for correction if you can give me one way we benefited from it.
We are labeled violent by our neighbors – both home and abroad; and when you hear the statement “that is how they are” after some gun shots, ask no more questions, just know they are referring to Zuu and his brothers. Every aspect of our live is defined by the conflict that, we judge the actions of others based on the gate they come from and or belong to. Sadly enough, our politics is also based on that.
As I write this article, there is nothing like Dagbang Youth Association – thanks to Abudu and Andani which formed a union with NPP and NDC to tear us apart. We have no mouth piece to voice out what bothers us, but we have several mouth pieces to speak for political parties and candidates!
Look around you; and you will see the Bimoba Youth Association; the Nanumba Youth Association, the kokomba Youth Association and the Maprusi Youth Association among others; pictures from the monthly and or annual meeting of Gonja Youth Association with DCEs and MPs in attendance always send me to tears. And I told one of the leaders how I feel when I see them united. Why can’t we??
As the largest ethnic group in the north, and with so many of our youth in important positions, why can’t we come together to work for the development of our kingdom? Now I want you to pause and ask yourself this question……. “Why should a fight within my own Tia family, for instance, hinder the development of the whole Tamale?” Why? How does that make sense?
Kings exist because there are kingdoms; just as royals exist because there are thrones. Without dagban, there will not be any royal gate. We can only protect the kings and royal gates by making sure our kingdom remains relevant; and we shall never be relevant with division.
With all respect we must say in one voice that ENOUGH is ENOUGH! Dagbang is a kingdom, and Abudu and Andani is a family – the family should not be bigger than the kingdom that, a conflict within it impedes our development. We have waited so long for a final resolution to the family feud – and we must not as youth let this hold us back. As a matter of fact, issues that have to do with chieftaincy is handled by the elders. As the youth, we can still work towards making the kingdom great as we wait for the elders to resolve the family issues.
Our addiction to political parties and party gods is not doing us any good either; we are digging holes for the collapse of our own brothers because of political affiliation. We rejoice when a brother from a different faction or party fails. We come together for our social functions, then move away to plan against one another. When one of us is growing, we see it as a threat rather than an opportunity for our growth – for nothing sensible than the fact that he is not in our party and or he does not belong to our faction!
It is time for us to say enough is enough! Before politics Dagban existed! NDC and NPP are political parties, Dagbang is a kingdom and bigger than the two parties combined. It is insane, illogical and extreme madness for us to love a family and a political party than the place we call home; even when the family and or party love is dismantling our home.
Because of our divided state, our beautiful culture is archived; instead, we share images from the cultural display of other ethnic groups. Our SIMPA dance; in which our beautiful women rotate their butts 360 degrees to the sound of drums blended with tuiters from their waist beads is dead. When the Tora drum is played, our women who should be moving their legs to the beautiful sounds while responding to the melodious voices of the elderly women now look on to Azonto for rescue – all because our culture is sleeping!
The only news about the region is on the Gambaga witches, a clash between political parties and or royal factions. The wonders left behind by Naa Zagli Dapali Sigli at Sang Chrizangzoli is not mentioned! The beautiful history of Naa Zangina; who introduced waist beads for women, walking sticks for the blind, and sandals for the cripples are all not told; and the beas of Kumbung logibuya Naa are not known to some of us. Sometimes we are even denied the celebration of our most beautiful festivals: damba and the Bugum festivals – all because one family is having an issue.
As I prepare to bring this article to an end, let me mention that trying to get Dagbang into the hands of the youth and the right path will be tough; there are politicians who benefit from the conflict, yet are promising its resolution. I want you to know that they will be stupid enough to fight to end what they benefit from. We can no longer wait for them – we must take back our dagbang and fight for its development. If a politician could help end this, it would have been over by now. It is time for the youth to leave it behind and move ahead for development; the time is now or never!!
In conclusion, unlike my previous articles, don’t just read and praise me – I am writing this for action! I want us to start right after the last sentence, and work together for the betterment of Dagban. So how do we do this? We need volunteers now; people who will be politically and royally neutral; people who will be ready to lead ; those who will not be shy, and will not fear to speak on behalf of the youth and dagbang! You can have a choice or preference, but do not bring that choice to the child that would be born or resurrected! If you think you can be this neutral, please submit your name to the email below for us to resurrect our dead youth associations. This must happen and it must happen now.
Dagbang deserves better; our parents deserve better and our kids deserve even more! We need to rise now, for in unity, we can achieve.
Enough is enough!
By Abubakari Sadiq Iddrisu – naasidikidiaries.com