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A Ghanaian, Kingsley Fletcher has been knighted despite rows over his knighthood in the Island of Malta.
Kingsley Fletcher, who is also a preacher and businessman, is also a traditional ruler who describes himself as the king of the Se Kingdom in the Greater Accra region. He bears the traditional name Nene Adamtey I.
He was admitted into the Ecumenical Order of the Knights of Malta on Saturday February 28, 2009. The event as reported by Maltese media has ruffled the feathers of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM).
The ceremony took place in the order’s headquarters, Castello dei Baroni in Wardija.
The order also planned to hold a Solemn Mass at the St John’s Co-Cathedral on Sunday March 1, 2009.
The SMOM has objected to the mass, and it was stopped by the church’s rector after he was notified that the Ecumenical Order, whose full name is the Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, was a separate, “false” order.
The reports say, the order’s members, while still able to attend the regular Sunday mass at the co-cathedral, were barred from attending in uniform or to reserve any seating.
Fletcher, however, was reported to have steered clear of the controversy. He told the Maltese media that he was unaware of the existence of the SMOM until the dispute broke out. He noted that he was representing a new, rising, order made up of like-minded people who were humanitarians as he was.
“I believe in their mission and I am delighted that they would see my work and my role as one that can also add, or expand their interests around the globe,” he said.
Known in private life as Kingsley Fletcher, King Adamtey I previously worked with the United Nations Development Programme for Africa, and has founded a humanitarian NGO, Life For Africa, in 1999, he was quoted as saying.
By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi