By Victoria Saffa
Member of Parliament of Constituency 96, Alhassan Kamara, has put to good use his conflict mediation skills to diffuse a dispute between youth in Allen Town and non- governmental organization, Concern Worldwide, over the construction of a borehole the Allen Town market/football field.
The dispute, according to Project Officer of Concern Worldwide, John Cooper, the dispute or disagreement as he put it, was over where to construct the borehole.
He said Concern had spoken to and got the permission of community stakeholders to construct a borehole for residents due to the fact that the latter face difficulties in accessing clean drinking water. Cooper said the meeting with the stakeholders agreed that two wells would be dug at the corner of the field, adding that when they returned with the engineer to commence work , youth in the community had barricaded the proposed site, apparently angry that the construction would potential deny them of their sole recreational area.
According to one of the youths in the community, Ibrahim Balani Kamara, they were not notified about the construction of the borehole, and because they have been taking care of the field for many years and felt slighted that nobody informed them about the initiative.
He alleged that the councillor in the Ward had told them that the field would be used to construct a shopping mall, which they kicked against because “the field is used as a place of worship during Ramadan and also for crusade.”
As tension mounted with the youth threatening to go on the rampage, Hon. Alhassan Kamara intervened and succeeded in calming down the irate youth.
He pacified them by explaining to them about the significance of constructing a borehole for the community, as residents, especially girls, face great difficulties to fetch water. His intervention helped assuage the youth who embraced development workers from Concern Worldwide and promised to support their work in the community.