Two youth groups of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) yesterday allegedly clashed over the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer for the Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH).
Whereas one group, the Coalition of Dagbon Youth Groups in Tamale, was opposed to the appointment of Dr David Zaawumya Akolbila as the CEO, the Kandahar Boys were in support of his appointment.
Armed with sticks, hammers, chains and other weapons, the Kandahar Boys allegedly launched a violent attack on the organisers of the press conference.
Scores of people who had massed up to take part in a street protest after the press conference took to their heels.
Speaking to journalists after the attack, a member of the Coalition of Dagbon Youth Groups, Mr Bashiru Baba, claimed that the chiefs in the Tamale metropolis sanctioned the demonstration after their plea to the Vice-President, Alhaji Dr Mahamadu Bawumia, to appoint an indigene as the CEO of the TTH had been ignored.
He was surprised that the NPP vigilante group perceived the coalition as made up of NDC members who wanted to destabilise the smooth running of the NPP administration in the region.
According to him, the group and the traditional authorities were against Dr Akolbila’s appointment and would, therefore, use all legitimate means to express their dissatisfaction, including demonstrations.
But the real drama was when the incumbent CEO of the TTH, Dr Prosper Akambong, allegedly refused to hand over to Dr Akolbila yesterday.
Sources at the hospital said Dr Akambong indicated that he would only hand over after receiving an official letter from the Minister of Health indicating whether he (CEO) had been reassigned or dismissed.
It is unclear what happened thereafter.
The sources said Dr Akambong was left with 16 months to complete his tenure of four years.
Meanwhile, the Northern Regional Secretary of the NPP, Mr Sule Salifu, has defended the action of the Kandahar Boys in disrupting the said press conference.
He told journalists after a crunch meeting of regional party executives over the issue that Dr Akambong had been appointed by the previous government and that his predecessor had made way for him and, therefore, he (Salifu) did not understand why Dr Akambong did not want to leave for the new CEO to take over.
Mr Salifu described the alleged press conference by the Coalition of Dagbon Youth as an attempt to tarnish the image of the NPP and said the Kandahar Boys had gone there to defend the government’s choice for the position of CEO of the TTH, Dr Akolbila.