Worried Ga chiefs seek ways to end disputes
By: Edmund Mingle
The Minister of Chieftaincy and Culture, Alexander Asum-Ahensan, has directed the judicial committees of all regional House to Chiefs of expedite action on cases pending before them.
He said the backlog of chieftaincy disputes in many of the regions did not augur well for the institutions, and therefore stressed the need for them to be cleared as a way of promoting peace in the traditional areas.
The Minister, who gave the directive during a meeting with the chiefs and elders of Asere stool, one of the cardinal houses in the Ga State, said the “government is not happy with what is happening in the chieftaincy institution”.
The Asere delegation, led by Nii Owula Kpakpa Blofonyo, Ga State Akwashong Mantse (supreme warrior) and Asere Akwashongtse, met with the Minister to discuss ways of resolving the chieftaincy disputes that have bedeviled Accra, particularly that of the Ga Mantse.
The Minister said although government was prohibited from interfering in chieftaincy matters, “we would not sit down and watch it destroy the country”.
Mr. Asum-Ahensan was particularly not happy with the situation in Accra, saying the many chieftaincy disputes posed a threat to peace, security and development.
Recognising that some of the Regional Houses of Chiefs were facing logistical and financial challenges, he promised that the Ministry would do what it could to support them.
He also urged all parties in the pending chieftaincy disputes to exercise restraint for their cases to be determined by the Judicial Committee, reminding them that resorting to violence was unlawful.
He thanked the elders of Asere for their desire to ensure peace in the Ga State, and assured them of his support and cooperation in that regard.
Nii Owula Kpakpa Blofonyo, who is also challenging Dr. Jo Blankson over his nomination and installation as Ga Mantse at the Greater Accra Regional House of Chiefs, said it was the desire of the elders of Asere to ensure that the right people were installed as chiefs to ensure peace.
“We are not out to condemn anybody, but we want the right thing to be done”, he stressed.
For instance, he said they would rally behind Dr. Jo Blankson for the development of the Ga State if the Judicial Committee declares him as the rightful person to be Ga Mantse.
He also urged the Ministry to collaborate with State Protocol and National House of Chiefs to ensure that the right installed chiefs who have be gazatted are those recognized by the government and other institutions.
“It is very disheartening to see some fake chiefs invited for state functions, while the genuinely installed ones are ignored by the government institutions”, he said.
That, he said, was one of the ways of ensuring sanity in the chieftaincy sector.
As part of the meeting, Nii Blofonyo presented a petition to the Minister to help by ensuring that the Greater Accra House of Chiefs speeds up the hearing on the cases against the Ga Mantse.
Daily Graphic - page: 19 Saturday, September 19, 2009