Chieftaincy Minister calls for registration of chiefs

Traditional rulers
Traditional rulers

The Ministry of Chieftaincy and Traditional Affairs has called on traditional councils to register all their chiefs in the national register of chiefs.

Dr Henry Seidu Danaa, Sector Minister, expressed worry that the chieftaincy institution has been overly infiltrated by many charlatans who are causing all manner of problems.

He made the call when addressing the Denkyira Traditional Council at Dunkwa-on-Offin in the Upper Denkyira East Municipality as part of a two-day working visit to some traditional councils in the region.

Dr Danaa said by registering chiefs one could distinguish between the charlatans and the legitimate ones.

He said the Ministry is working fervently to complete the amendment of the Section 63(d) of the Chieftaincy Act 2008 that made it an offence for a person to deliberately refuse to honour a call by a chief to attend to an issue at the palace.

The section was struck out following a Supreme Court law suit filed by a former Chief of Goaso in the Brong Ahafo Region, Nana Agyei Ampofo, who challenged the Act and sought constitutional interpretation in 2012.

Dr Danaa said the amendment was not to usurp the power and undermine the authority of chiefs but to clarify the provision to foster peace between the chiefs and the people.

He said government recognises the key role-play by traditional rulers in maintaining law and order at the grassroots level and would ensure that their authority is strengthened.

Dr Danaa said Paramount Queen mothers would be included in the various house of chiefs, and workshops are being organised to sensitise them.

He said the Ministry is in the process of appointing a new legal counsel for the Regional House of Chiefs, to help the house to adjudicate the numerous cases pending at the courts.

Nana Ama Ayensua Saara II, Paramount Queen mother of Denkyira, who received the delegation appealed to government to ensure that the amendment of the Chieftaincy Act, does not undermine the authority of traditional rulers.

She said if the issue is not handled properly it could lead to breakdown of law and order in the traditional areas.

She expressed unhappiness about the increasing rate of chieftaincy disputes and appealed for the introduction of Alternative Dispute Resolution mechanism into the traditional council.

At Assin Fosu where the minister met the Effutuakwa Traditional Council in the Assin Area, Nana Afransie IV, Paramount Queen mother appealed to government to organise workshops to equip traditional leaders to rule effectively.

When the entourage reached Agona Nsabaa Traditional Area, Nana Kofi Yeboah VIII, Gomoa Bobekuma Odikro and Acting President of the Traditional Council appealed for rehabilitation of the Swedru road network to facilitate the council’s activities.

The Minister and officials and the Regional House of Chiefs also visited the Agona Nyarkrom, Ekumfi and Anomabo Traditional Councils, where concerns about the delay in registration of chiefs were brought on board.

Other concerns raised were on the remuneration for divisional chiefs, unavailability of registrars and other staff at some traditional councils and issues concerning their boundaries.

Source: GNA

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