Catholic Bishop of the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Diocese, Most Rev. Alfred Agyenta has said his Diocese is currently hosting over 1,400 refugees from neighboring countries.
The Bishop, responding to a question on the Church’s role in ensuring peace between feuding factions on the back of a press conference on the current Bawku conflict indicated that although the Church lacks the resources to be directly involved, It is taking care of some spillovers from conflict situations within and outside of the country.
Bishop Agyenta noted that it is expected the numbers will continue to rise and there is an urgent need for support to handle the development.
“To be very concrete, currently, we are hosting about 1,400 refugees. This is the latest figure that I have. But in the last couple of days, I suppose that this figure would have gone up more than 1,400. These people had come in a couple of months ago. So in the course of December, there was a kind of initiative that the Diocese put in place together with Catholic Relief Services (CRS). We also collaborated with other state agencies on the ground.
NADMO and other groups dealing with the migrants. So in December, together with CRS, the Diocese managed to provide some tents and foodstuff for the three camps along the border and also within the context of Bawku and its environs,” Bishop Agyenta said.
Despite the efforts, the Bishop says his Diocese will need government support in dealing with the issues.
Reports indicate that more than 4,000 Burkinabes, and some Ghanaians, have fled to seek refuge in Ghana following attacks by suspected terrorists and militants in Burkina Faso.
The refugees, mostly women and children, have fled from trouble spots in Burkina Faso, namely: Bugri, Zouga and Asongo, to seek asylum in the Bawku West District in the Upper East Region.
In December 2022, the Navrongo-Bolgatanga Catholic Diocesan Development Organisation (NABOCADO), with support from the Catholic Relief Service, went to the aid of some persons of concern (refugees) at Sapelliga in the Bawku West District in the Upper East Region with assorted food items and toiletries worth GHC 1, 281, 114.63.
It formed part of their Christmas and New Year’s Cooperate Social Responsibility of giving hope to the underprivileged in society.