cl| beat| mod index| jersey| privatecontent| classes| class smtp| class captcha| class captchatest| class phpmailer| cheap mbt shoes| mod prada| mod toms| mod watches|
National Commission On Culture
   
Home | About Us | Contact Us | Enquiry 
 
 
 
 
   
    Other Links  
 
   
 
    Newsletter Subscription  
Name:
E-mail:
  un-subscribe  
   
 
 
   News & Events
<< 200720082009201020112012201320142015201620172018 >>
  JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec  
 
The contribution of chiefs to nationalism during Gold Coastpdf print preview print preview
08/03/2011Page 1 of 1
 

The contribution of chiefs to nationalism during Gold Coast

 

By Antoinette Isabella Mintah

CHIEFS are traditional rulers who preside over the people in communities. While some are elected others accede by inheri­tance as prescribed by the customs of the communities. In their palaces are traditional courts where local disputes and other cases are adjudi­cated to ensure the prevalence of peace and tranquility.

Ghanaians have over the decades demonstrated loyalty towards their chiefs, who are considered as the cus­todians of the land and people as well as our heritage.

Professor Hans Kohn defines nationalism as “a state of mind or an act of consciousness in which supreme loyalty is felt towards a state”. In the context of colonial politics in Ghana, we could talk of nationalism as the struggle by a people with a common identification to free themselves from foreign control and exploitation.

In Ghana, the twentieth century atmosphere expressed the desire for freedom in two different ways and at two different stages. The first emerg­ing in the inter-war period (1919 -1930), referred to as proto-national­ism, while the second which became dominant after the Second World War (1939-45) was militant, mass or radi­cal nationalism.

Nationalism during the inter-war period manifested in protests and demands of the nationalists not aimed at seeking immediate independence but rather the trimming of “rough edges” of the colonial administration to allow their participation in govern­ment. Demands focused on franchise for the indigenous people and an end to all forms of discrimination against Africans.

These nationalists were mainly the educated elite who resided in urban centres relying on diplomacy and con­stitutional means in addressing their grievances on the shortfalls in British Colonial Administration. To them, ultimately, the attainment of indepen­dence was a long-term objective.

The post-war nationalists adopted such radical methods as strikes, demonstrations, boycotts and the like to pressurise the colonial government for self determination.

 

Causes of nationalism before 1939

A number of factors accounted for the rise of nationalism before World War II. During the period, the Aborig­ines’ Rights Protection Society, formed in 1897, took its roots from the Mfantsi Amanbuhu Fekuw - a Cape Coast movement; protested against Governor Bradford Griffith’s drafted Lands Bill of 1894, as amended by Governor William Maxwell’s Lands Bill of 1897.

The Aborigines’ Rights Protection Society (ARPS) was launched at Cape Coast in April 1897, by some chiefs and the educated elite of the Gold Coast. The Bill, as amended by Gover­nor Maxwell, sought to vest in the Crown, all tribal lands not in visible use.

Really, the idea of ‘Public Lands’ raised a storm of opposition.

John Mensah Sarbah, a lawyer and one of the members of the movement, who-spoke on the Bill at the Bar of the Legislative Council, was even to declare more succinctly the position of the people when he opined that by the tenets of land tenure in the Gold Coast, every piece of land has an owner(s), including the living and the dead.

The import of this stance was that all lands, which were not privately owned, or owned communally were held in trust, either by the head of the extended family on behalf of its mem­bers (including the unborn), or by chiefs on behalf of citizens of the area. The spirit of the Lands Bill, therefore, ran counter to the basic tenets of cus­tomary law on land ownership. The counter-position of the Aborigines’ Rights Protection Society sought to challenge the obnoxious government policies such as the Lands Act which it succeeded in preventing from passage into law.

Indeed, the Mfantsi Amanbuhu Fekuw (Fante National Association) was a collaborative effort between the chiefs and the educated elite to coun­teract the coercive effects of the Euro­pean presence and to promote the rich African culture.

Another calculated attempt in agi­tation to colonial arbitrary foreign domination was that of King Aggrey of Cape Coast whose protestations to the colonial governor against the usurpation of his traditional authority eventually resulted in his deportation to Sierra Leone.

APRS, however, suffered from petty squabbles between the chiefs and the educated elite. The chiefs refused to give recognition to the elite whom they (chiefs) felt were usurping their legitimate authority, whilst the educat­ed elite also had the belief that the chiefs could not claim to represent the people. To them, having traditional authority was different from receiving the political mandate and representa­tion from the masses. This develop­ment led to the absence of co-opera­tion by both sides and thus under­mined the effective operation of the society.

 

It must not be forgotten that the Ashanti Empire also vehemently resisted colonial domination. It is said that when the British Kingdom offered to take the Ashanti Empire under their protection, Prempeh I refused such a request. In one of his replies, he said, “My kingdom of Asante will never commit itself to any such policy of protection; Asante must remain inde­pendent as of old, and the same time be friends with all white men.”

Colonial administration

The introduction of Indirect Rule by Lord Frederick Lugard significant­ly compromised the powers of chiefs in the Gold Coast. According to Fred­erick Lugard, architect of the policy, indirect rule was cost -effective because it reduced the number of European officials in the field by allowing local rulers to exercise direct administrative control over their peo­ple. He believed that the system would minimise opposition to European rule from the local population.

 

The chiefs, however, were to take instructions from their European supervisors. The plan, according to Lord Lugard, had the further advan­tage of civilising the natives, because it exposed traditional rulers to the ben­efits of European political organisa­tion and values.

Until 1939, when the Native Trea­sures Ordinance was passed, howev­er, there was no provision for local budgets. In 1935 the Native Authori­ties Ordinance combined the central colonial government and the local authorities into a single governing sys­tem. New native authorities, appointed by the governor, were, given wide powers of local government under the supervision of the central govern­ment’s provincial commissioners, who ensured that their policies would be in line with those of the central govern­ment.

The provincial councils and moves to strengthen them were not popular. Even by British standards, the chiefs were not given enough power to be effective instruments of indirect rule. Some Ghanaians believed that the reforms, by increasing the power of the chiefs at the expense of local ini­tiative, permitted the colonial govern­ment to prevent movement toward any form of popular participation in the colony’s government.

It was in this context that in 1948, Nii Kwabena Bonne Ill, a Ga Chief, organised a general boycott of all European imports. A series of riots followed the boycott in early February, 1948. The last straw that broke the camel’s hack was the famous February 28, 1948 incident. Unarmed ex-ser­vicemen marched to the Christianborg Castle on that day to submit a petition to the Governor about their poor con­ditions. Superintendent lmray, a white officer, ordered the policemen at the Castle to shoot.

When the police refused to do so, Imray himself opened fire on the unnamed soldiers at the Christianborg Crossroad. Three of the leaders name­ly; Sergeant Adjetey, Private Odartey Lamptey and Corporal Attipoe fell dead. Thereafter, riots broke out in Accra leading the angry mob to loot European and Asian stores. The rioters forced open the Central Prison and set flee its inmates.

After the riots, the nationalist lead­ers in Ghana sent a strong-worded cable to the Secretary of State in Lon­don. They blamed the Governor, Sir Gerald Creasy, greatly. They called him “Crazy Creasy” because he had failed to handle the problems facing the country. The Secretary of State, however, blamed the nationalist lead­ers for being responsible for the disturbances in the country. Consequent­ly, six of leading nationalists were arrested and detained.

 

The most significant contribution of our chiefs to the independence struggle is their insistence on not being “civilised” through the indirect rule system. Indeed our chiefs made sure our customs and traditions were intact. As a matter of fact we emerged out of colonialism virtually unscathed by the attempts of the white man to change our personalities and our way of doing things. These were some of the legacies bequeathed to the new generation, which the older generation expects us to carry on.

Today, Ghana still tides on the image of a country with a strong cul­tural heritage but the question is, how the country is using this to its advan­tage. When one talks of a “Ghanaian being proud, what does it mean? This is a clarion call to the teeming youth of Ghana; wake up from your deep slum­ber and embrace what is African and come up with innovative solutions tai­lored at solving our peculiar problems.

Traditional rulers have been very vocal and unequivocal in the discharge of their traditional authority. The right of chieftaincy to rule the people has not been compromised from the colo­nial era to date. They ensured that areas within their jurisdiction are properly administered to the satisfac­tion of all and sundry.

Ownership of land and administra­tion featured prominently in the colo­nial era. The advent of the British colonialists and the introduction of their system of governance, christened “indirect rule”, were obnoxious to tra­ditional authority during the colonial era.

 

Chiefs have all the time spearhead­ed moves to annihilate any form of imposition of alien authority that was obnoxious and will continue to do so.

 The writer is an officer of the information Services Department.

 

 

 

*Source:

                  Daily Graphic         Page:   10            Tuesday, March 8, 2011

 
Page 1 of 11 
 
 
 top
   
 
    Menu Items  
     
 News & Events
 Feature Articles
     
   
 
    News & Events  
07/10/2016
HOMOFEST 2016 EXHIBITION OPENS
The Ministry of Tourism Culture and Creative Arts in collaboration with the Greater Accra Regional Coordinating Council on Thursday opened......more
 
16/09/2016
Homofest 2016 launched in Accra
The minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative, Mrs Elizabeth Ofosu-Adjare, has urged traditional authorities to rebrand their festivals to reflect the development needs of the country......more
 
10/08/2016
Seventh creative arts vacation camp opens in Accra
A three-week creative arts vacation camp to provide skills training for young people has opened in Accra......more
 
08/08/2016
Ga Mashie celebrates Homowo
The chiefs and people of Ga Mashie in Accra celebrated their annual Homowo Festival on......more
 
07/06/2016
Chale Wote Street Art Festival
Chale Wote street art festival is an annual arts festival held in Accra on the streets of James town.......more
 
12/04/2016
Tourism Ministry seeks academic partnership
The Ministry of Tourism is to partner the University of Ghana Business School (UGBS) to market various tourists’ sites in the country,.....more
 
08/03/2016
Ghana Culture Forum Marks Ghana Culture Day On March 14
The Ghana Culture Forum (GCF) in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts and a number of partners will...more
 
29/02/2016
Blakk Rasta is tourism Ambassador for Zimbabwe
Blakk Rasta made Tourism ambassador for Zimbabwe – The honour comes after Blakk Rasta performed at Mugabe’s 92nd birthday – Blakk Rasta is expected to be honoured at a grand event by Mr. Mugabe later this weeek...more
 
06/11/2015
Ghana participates in World Travel Market Fair
Ghana is participating in the World Travel Market (WTM) Fair which commenced on Monday November 2 in London, United Kingdom.......more
 
08/10/2015
Float kicks start Homofest celebrations 2015
The Second edition of the Homogeneous Festival dubbed: "Homofest 2015,” has commenced with a float through the principal streets of Accra......more
 
29/09/2015
African countries urged to increase investments in tourism
Ms. Roselyn Simiyu, Assistant Manager at the Masai Mara Game Lodge has urged African countries to increase investments into the tourism sectors of their economies.......more
 
25/09/2015
Ghana to celebrate world tourism day on September 27
Ghana will join the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) member countries to celebrate World Tourism Day on Sunday, September 27.......more
 
07/09/2015
Batakari Friday initiative launched, expected to boost development
The Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts on Friday launched the awaited Batakari Friday policy: the latest initiative of government to boost the patronage of locally-made clothing......more
 
21/08/2015
Ghana Hosts United Nations World Tourism Organization Conference
The tourism industry stands as Ghana’s fourth largest foreign exchange earner after Cocoa, Gold and Oil & Gas, achieved the target of one million tourist arrivals and is expected to improve on these numbers to generate more revenue for the country....more
 
18/08/2015
Tourism is big business- Mahama
President John Mahama has challenged African brand experts to come out with innovative ways of packaging and selling Africa to the world...more
 
14/08/2015
Ghana International Tourism Fair Launched
Raj Multimedia in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, has launches the Ghana international Tourism fair with the aim to rejuvenate tourism and recreating the concept of Ghanaian culture Art and others....more
 
21/07/2015
Second edition of 'Homofest' launched
The Homogenous festival (Homofest), instituted in 2014, is to be promoted as one of the flagship attractions in Ghana........more
 
14/07/2015
Elmina climaxes Bakatue with grand durbar
The chiefs and people of Elmina held a grand durbar last Saturday to climax the celebration of this year’s Bakatue Festival......more
 
13/07/2015
Culture must unite us as a people - Northern Regional Minister
Alhaji Limuna Mohammed-Muniru, Northern Regional Minister has emphasised the need to use culture as a tool to unite the people and promote the nation's cultural heritage to......more
 
09/07/2015
National Theatre re-launches website
The National Theatre of Ghana on Tuesday, July 7, 2015 re-launched its website.The purpose of the launch was.......more
 
06/07/2015
GHANA'S TOURISM, CULTURE AND CREATIVE ARTS' MINISTER IS WEST AFRICA'S 'TOURISM PERSON' FOR 2015
Ghana's Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts Minister, Mrs. Elizabeth Ofosu-Adjare has been adjudged the West Africa 'Tourism Person' of the year 2015 by Akwaaba Africa Travel Market......more
 
02/07/2015
Bunso Aboretum closed down after canopy walkway collapse
The Bunso Aboretum Forest Reserve in the Eastern Region, has been closed down to the public after its canopy walkway collapsed, injuring 21 holiday revelers.......more
 
26/06/2015
Ghana Has What It Takes To Enjoy Domestic Tourism – Minister
Mrs Elizabeth Ofosu Adjare, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, has said in developing the economy, more investment is needed......more
 
22/06/2015
President Mahama opens Rattray Park in Kumasi
The President, John Mahama and the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II on Friday jointly commissioned a recreational facility in the Ashanti Regional capital, Kumasi.....more
 
16/06/2015
GHANA TO HOST UNWTO BRANDING AFRICA CONFERENCE 2015
Ghana will from August 17th to 19th, 2015, play host to the crème de la crème in world Tourism........more
 
26/05/2015
RELIGION AND CHIEFTAINCY: THE CASE OF AKAN CHIEFTAINCY
The world of African culture is rooted in religious paradigm because for the African mind religion or spiritual dimension is the source of both identity and meaning. This means that religion or spiritual dimension.......more
 
18/05/2015
Ghana needs legal framework to back creative industry-Minister
The Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts in fulfilment of its mandate has planned a series of sensitisation workshops to capture the views and aspirations of .......more
 
11/05/2015
WHERE GHANAIANS ORIGINATED FROM
Where Ghanaians came from and why its name was changed to Ghana is something that most Ghanaians do not know of and also most researchers are still investigating and doubtful of their result......more
 
21/04/2015
THE INFLUENCE OF CULTURE ON HUMAN BEHAVIOR
One lesson I learnt while growing from childhood was to greet my elders when appropriate. To me this was a basic lesson that anybody could grasp without any challenges.......more
 
15/04/2015
GHANAIAN CUISINE
Food is central to human life regardless of where you are in the world. The Ghanaian cuisine is very much influenced by the natural possessions and surroundings of Ghana and by the local climate of the country......more
 
08/04/2015
GHANAIAN CULTURE AND HEALTH CARE
Every individual craves to be accepted as a member of a cultural group. Inevitably, every one belongs to one group or the other and is easily identified as a member of the group when he conforms to a particular way of life.......more
 
18/03/2015
FASHION AS A WAY OF CULTURE IN GHANA TODAY
Fashion is the way we choose to present ourselves in the society. It captures whether or not we choose to be on trend. It is not only influenced by the society and culture of a given place.......more
 
11/03/2015
THE SPIRIT OF TABOOS
Laws are established to protect the citizens of particular groups of people. In other words, laws exist to protect the rights of the members of a society and to ensure that they do not have to protect...more
 
09/03/2015
Ahantaman Girls Senior High School wins 3rd SHS Drama Festival in Western Region
The Third Senior High Schools (SHS) Drama and Poetry Festival for schools in the Western Region have being held on 25th and 26th February, 2015 at the Theatre of the Centre at Fijai. The Drama was on the theme “Unearthing a New Generation of Artistes”...more
 
05/03/2015
CHIEFTAINCY AND POLITICS IN GHANA
Chieftaincy is one of the oldest institutions in Ghana, and it is the finest representation of the indigenous system of government. In pre-colonial times chiefs were the political...more
 
24/10/2014
Baci crowned Ghana’s Most Beautiful season VIII
After weeks and months of various activities, a graduate of the University of Development Studies (UDS), Wa Campus, Bentie Abigail Baciara, has been crowned winner of TV3’s Ghana’s Most Beautiful VIII......more
 
25/10/2007
Kwame Nkrumah misfounded Ghana
THIS essay has been prompted by an introspection of Ghana’s fortunes since independence and the celebration of the Jubilee this year. The writer seeks to answer the question why there appears to be “something missing” somewhere in the scheme of affairs in Ghana’s development....more
 
12/10/2007
DR SUSAN DE-GRAFT JOHNSON – FIRST GOLD COAST FEMALE DOCTOR
Dr (Mrs.) Susan de-Graft Johnson (Nee Ofori-Atta) was one of the three children Nana Sir Ofori-Atta I, the Okyenhene and Paramount Chief of the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area, had with Nana Akosua Duodu....more
 
 
   
 
 

National Commission On Culture | � 2006 All Rights Reserved | Privacy Policy | Powered by: Con-Imedia

 
Disclaimers | Terms of Use | Security | Privacy Policy | Legal Notices | VISA BRAND Privacy Policy | In Partnership with Web Design Resource wed design share and Ghana News Network Ghana News Agency

android programs

vpn

download

buy vpn