Saturday, April 14, 2007
Saturday, May 9, 2007
Coronation of Tackie Tawiah comes of today
· House of Chiefs throws out application for injunction
By: STEPHEN SAH
THE planned coronation today of King Tackie Tawiah II as Ga Mantse will come off as scheduled, following the dismissal of an exparte motion for interim injunction by the acting head of the Abola Piam We at the Greater Accra Regional House of Chiefs.
At its sitting at Dodowa yesterday, the house held that the petitioner brought the action for injunction to months after suing the defendant.
Moreover, there had been sufficient notice about the intention of the defendants to organize the coronation.
It said with all that public information, it was wrong and unethical for the petitioner to have come, on the eve of the event, with an ex-parte motion seeking the injunction.
Joseph Yahaya Addy, the petitioner/applicant, last Thursday filed the motion with the Judicial Committee of the Grater Accra Regional House of Chiefs seeking an order to restrain the Ga Traditional Council from installing or carrying out the coronation of King Tackie Tawiah as Ga Mantse until the determination of the suit.
After the nomination and introduction of King Tackie Tawiah, other rulling houses opposed the idea and engaged in legal battles, some of which are still pending.
The Abola Piam We. One of the four stool houses of the Ga State, which claims the right to nominate a new chief, last Wednesday nominated Nii Tackie Obli II, known in private life as Henry Nii Ayitey Ayitey, a 57-year-old publisher, to be the next Ga Mantse.
The applicant was further seeking an order to restrain the Ga Traditional Council from allowing King Tawiah to enter into and sit as Ga Mantse in the council or perform the functions of a Ga Mantse in the council or attend any event in the name of the or as Ga Mantse and occupy the Ga Mantse Palace at Kaneshie.
Additionally, he was seeking an order to restrain King Tackie Tawiah from styling himself and or acting as Ga Mantse.
Joined to the suit were Nii Tetteh Ashong, Daniel Armah Tackie (Nii Akropong) and Odehe Kpakpa King Odaifio Welentse III of Ayiku We, Nungua.
The grounds for the grant of the application, contained in his statement of case, where that there was the need to preserve the status quo in order to avoid irreparable damage to him provided the case was not frivolous or vexatious.
The statement said there was a legal right to be protected because customary law was part of the laws of Ghana and matters affecting chieftaincy were regulated by laws, such as the Constitution and the Chieftaincy Act and its regulations.
The right to ascend to the Ga Mantse Stool, it said, accrued to the Abola Piam We immediately after the death of Boni Nii Amugi in 2005 and that right was confirmed by the presentation of customary drinks to the Abola Piam by the Ga Royal Stool Dzaase after the burial of Nii Amugi.
“That right must be protected by this Judicial Committee or an usurper, in the person of King Tackie Tawiah, will set a very dangerous precedent in succession to stools in this region”, he said.
Accordingly to him, it was just and convenient to grant the application because it was not the turn of the Teiko Tsuru We, where King Tackie Tawiah hails from, to provide a candidate for the position of Ga Mantse, while customary drinks had not been presented to the Teiko Tsuru We to provide a candidate for Ga Mantse.
The applicant maintained that King Tackie Tawiah had not been duly nominated by the Teiko Tsuru We, neither had the Ga Royal Stool Dzaase installed him as such because the position of Ga Mantse was being contested.
He said the issue as to the right to nominate a candidate to ascend the Ga Mantse Stool was a serious matter which, if not handled properly, could occasion a serious breach of the peace.
“It is in the supreme interest of the image, dignity, reputation and honour of the noble institution of chieftaincy to stop this blatant disregard for custom, tradition, usage and convention of the Ga people and for law and order in this country, as by King Tackie Tawiah”, the statement said.
At the time of going to press, another motion on notice seeking an interim injunction against the coronation was said to have been filed before the house.
However, the indications are that the defendants have three days within which to respond.
Meanwhile, when the Daily Graphic visited the Ga Mantse Palace, the venue for the historic event, feverish preparations were under way for what has been planned to be one of the most colourful events in Ga history, reports Charles Benoni Okine.
Trucks loaded with canopies and tents had arrived, while some were already being mounted.
The ‘Asafoatsemei’ of King Tackie Tawiah, clad in ‘T’ shirts with the picture of the king embossed on them, paraded the yard as they supervised the arrangements for the programme. Some were also painting certain portions of the palace to give it a colourful look to befit the status of the grand occasion.
They wielded their traditional whips.
Asked to comment on a report that the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) was meeting to discuss the security implications of the coronation, the Greater Regional Minister, Sheikh I.C. Quaye, said that was a matter for the committee.
He, however, explained that the committee was concerned with maintaining peace, law and order so that residents of Accra could go about their daily activities without let or hindrance.
Together we shall succeed
THE Institution of Chieftaincy in our country has a long history and is fully enshrined in our constitution. However, historically, it has not always been respected by our past governments.
Some of the reasons for this can be attributed to the fact that the role of Chiefs or Traditional Rulers in the process of governance has never been clearly defined. In recent years, great chiefs like the Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, the Okyehene Amoati Ofori Panyin and others such as Togbi Afedzi have shown great tenacity in providing active leadership for their people.
The examples they have shown have to be actively supported by the government so that we can forge a common purpose for our people, and receive equal encouragement from our central authority. It will be a waste to be regarded as mere ornaments that are simply decorating the national landscape.
The people of Ghana owe a great debt of gratitude to our previous and the present government, the former for promulgating our constitution, and the latter for working it to provide peace and tranquility for us all. The peace dividend, as it is called, has enabled us to plan our national economy with the high expectation of achieving middle income status by 2015. Vision 2020, GPRS I and GPRS II further exemplify such plans. It is our humble plea that all of these efforts must create some degree of well-being for the entire nation.
In the Ga State, poverty has suppressed the hopes of our people, degenerated their social setting, and depressed the aspirations of their children and successors. In Ga Mashie, underemployment stands at high percentage and most of the youth are deemed unemployable.
Since Accra’s population alone had significantly increased when compared to that of the nation at the time of our independence some 50 years ago, its problems have assumed national proportions and require a dedicated blue-ribbon committee to work out an integrated plan which will require the participation of each and every one of us in order to achieve true success.
It is noteworthy that all the headquarters of the corporate bodies in Ghana are located in Accra. We have all been privy to the great strides that they have been making in achieving enormous returns on their investments. In all parts of the world, sponsors of development have been such corporate bodies since they channel notable percentages of their profits in payment of social duty.
A healthy environment profits all and growth of the heart of Accra is a responsibility of all who reside in the Ga State. We shall therefore create a Ga Development Corporation (GDC) to undertake a carefully planned programme that would uplift the capital city. We shall call on the corporate bodies to contribute meaningfully in creating the financial base for the GDC.
Also, Accra is not just the host city to the government, but the Gas serve as hosts to members of the presidency, the legislature, the Judiciary and indeed, all branches of government. Additionally, the people of Accra collectively live with other institutions and kinsmen from other areas of the country.
We pray that we shall continue to live in peace and harmony as we have done for the past several decades. We however expect that our guests will honour all the familiar traditions that are required by the host state.
We must also be prepared to contribute amply for further development of our inner cities which will foster the common good for all of us.
It would be our aim to work in concert with the National Government to resolve all the thorny issues of land tenureship by simplifying the process of legitimacy and to adjudicate all the Chieftaincy disputes that trouble our local governance. We have the ability to accomplish this goal and the capability to conclude it peacefully.
We recall with great relish the celebration of the 50th Anniversary of our independence. Our president stood proud and tall to conduct the festivities with enormous dignity.
President Kufuor then traveled overseas to the UK, - Portugal, and other locations where he memorably represented Ghana with great admiration and enhanced personal stature. His election to the presidency of OAU and similar honours from ECOWAS has brought much recognition and an appreciation for Ghana and its people in all.
We are all better off because of his achievements, and we thank him for being a passionate friend to the people, our capital with absolute sincerity. Our thanks however, come with a request to his government to release our Old Town Hall or the Old Parliament Building to us to serve as the Metropolitan Hall of Accra.
The Golden Jubilee celebrations gave us a great resurgence of our political aspirations and rejuvenated our hopes for an improved and developed Ghana. We also had the privilege of recalling the contributions of our heroes: Men like Nii Kwabena Bonne IV (the Boycotthene) who started the actual struggle for independence; and we honour our two members of the Big Six, Ako Adjei and Obetsebi Lamptey and the Ex-service men Sgt. Adjetey and Pte. Odartey Lamptey, who were among the first to shed blood for the struggle. They add to names like Quartey Papafio, Bannerman, Orgle, Vanderpuyes, Nanka Bruce, V.B. Annan, Blankson-Lartey, and numerous others who for many years during the past century, shed bright luster on the efforts to sublimate the lives of our people.
To all and to the others who helped to form the Manbii Party, the Rate Payers Association, and who consolidated the UGCC and provided form roots to the CPP and their Successor transformations, we offer our gratitude. And to those others whose creativity has enriched our proud political environment, we pay humble obeisance and how our heads to them in gracious salutations. They will never be forgotten, as we will always honours them.
By the valuable and inspirational contributions of these and our forefathers, we shall raise the Ga State to higher heights and shall count on the contributions of all the Sons and Daughters of the land.
Our resourceful Mayor Blankson has given some directions and we shall tax him to lead us. Our Regional Minister Sheik I.C. Quaye will also continue to be an anchor of hope to our enterprises. Together, we shall succeed.
Daily Graphic - Saturday, April 14, 2007 Page: 1 & 3
Saturday, May 9, 2007 Page: 7 & 9