Sixteen persons will be arraigned before a court today following a violent incident at the Kumasi abattoir on Tuesday.

They have been charged with disturbing public peace at a public place.

The suspects are leaders of two factions who are battling over the position of the chief butcher following the demise of the substantive one.

A joint police and military contingent were deployed to the slaughterhouse after violence broke out between the two factions.

The melee, according to reports left at least six persons, including a local reporter injured.

It is expected that the suspects who have since been cautioned will be arraigned before a court in Kumasi today, a police incident report sighted by Dailymailgh read.

Tensions are high at the enclave after the position of a chief butcher was declared vacant following the demise of their leader Alhaji Musah Bawa Tanko last year.

Two individuals later emerged as the rightful occupants of the position.

A separate induction of the two named as, Alhaji Muntari Bature and Ibrahim Wahab Tikuma, has left members of the Butchers Association divided.

A committee set up by the Ashanti Regional Security Council was yet to bring closure on the matter.

Violence, however, flared up at the slaughterhouse on yesterday, Tuesday, as both factions engaged in a brawl.

“Just this morning, I arrived at the abattoir around 10:30 am and saw Alhaji Bature with about 50 people entering the abattoir. We, however, did not do anything. They came and bypassed us. Then just a few metres away, they started throwing stones on us”, one of the Chiefs, Ibrahim Wahab Tikuma narrated.

“So because our members were working, we did not want to do anything that will disturb the abattoir and the butchers. So we decided to control our youth but the situation got out of hand and they also started throwing stones. As at now, five of my people are wounded and some were sent to the hospital and discharged,” he further stated.

The other leader, Alhaji Muntari Bature, also said he was born into the profession and has been installed and recognised by the Council of Zongo Chiefs as the Chief Butcher.

“Some Frafra and Dagomba people just harassed me. I’m a butcher. I was born into the profession. Everything about me is about the job and because I was enstooled as a chief butcher, they are angry and sour with it. That is why we are here at the Central police station to give our statement so they can take it to court. And I said I’m ready for it.”

Security has been beefed up at the scene pointing to planned further attacks.

By Jonathan Ofori

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