Comfort Doe Fell Embroiled in Chieftaincy Disputes

If you are a little leaner, sometimes you cannot even watch your steps. So like a baby trying to learn how to walk, you will tumble and fall.

And so it happened to Comfort Benyiwa. Ama, the Kufuor insulter, Chavez who hates Kufuor so much that she will snub a ceremony to honour him, has been falling all over. Embroiled in chieftaincy palaver, she fell recently, not once, but twice at a single function.

We of traditionalists will say, my compatriots, that it is a bad omen, a very bad omen for 2012. We are not in America. But there, a leader who misses steps and falls twice at a single function condemns the group she belongs to, an ensuing election loss.

She is the one who, with an irritating voice, claimed a congress time beginning for an eclipse which happened during the Osono administration. She is of congress officialdom that is neck deep into undermining the chieftaincy institution.

Without a modicum of scruple, congress exploited the Dagbon chieftaincy tragedy into office. Now that the lies have caught up with them, they are shamelessly speaking more lies that the NPP destroyed all criminal evidence, even when they had said they were in possession of video evidence.

In Ga land, the Central Region, and many other spots across the motherland, congress is busy sabotaging the development efforts of progressive chiefs they consider unfriendly to their diabolical deeds. Projects can be funded from the chief's own personal resources; congress still doesn't care. The chief will still be damned if he doesn't openly identify himself with congress.

Congress will proceed and make life as a chief unbearable for him and render the prosecution of his chiefly responsibilities almost impossible. It is part of their exclusion strategy. Sometimes I ask myself how many hands will show if one were to ask for compatriots who have never voted congress but secured public sector jobs from 1982 to 2000 and since January 7, 2009.

When my Efutu in-laws decided not to have their Aboakyer, Ama Sergeant Doe usurped Efutu traditional authority and said she would have it. She also said no to Okatakyi Amanfi of Asebu honouring Kufuor (Daily Guide, November 21, 2011). Thanks to the Omanhene Doctor; he defied her and conferred the honour.

Somewhere in the Brong Ahafo Region, congress has been doing everything it can to deny the people of Berekum progress. A very progressive chief, a professional medical officer, has had whatever attempt he has made to bring a positive difference to the lives of his people sabotaged by congresspeople.

Over the weekend of December 3, when the Omanhene, after mobilizing citizens to renovate a part of the town, was to have it commissioned, congress schemed and stopped the function. I hear it was an injunction over a case already settled way up at the Supreme Court.

 If Nana had invited their commissioning and sod-cutting do-little professor to commission the project, maybe he would have had no problem.

It is so unfair. I think once a true royal is duly nominated and installed a chief, he should be allowed to function so that the people's development does not suffer. Let the self-seeking litigate; but never at the expense of the community's welfare and development.

Let us ask ourselves, my compatriots, whether we would all sit down, fold our arms, and watch unconcerned should a group decide to litigate the outcome of a presidential election forever. 

Chieftaincy disputes sometimes drag on endlessly. My compatriots, as a people, we should find a quick solution to that kind of development disablement. In the Berekum case, and as often happens in similar situations, someone appoints himself an acting president of the traditional council, unaccountable to anyone but himself and any cronies he would be able to co-opt.

Such self-appointed transition leaders must be made to account for actions they take twice a year for as long as they continue to litigate the legitimacy of a true royal enstolled as a chief.

Maybe the sanction for those who deny communities development with punishing litigation is usually not enough. Those litigants should be made to compensate the communities in addition to those whose royal qualification they contest when they lose cases of that nature.

Berekum is falling apart because congress says 'ye bebo  kuro no' (we will destroy the town). It is extremely illogical to propose that the commissioning of a development project will lead to violence when the enstoolment of the chief who undertook the project caused no breach of peace.

Let someone, my compatriots, let you all save a once golden city from collapse at the hands of congress manipulators of the institutions of state with the abuse of the state power entrusted in their hands. Power is for construction not destruction.        

By Kwasi Ansu-Kyeremeh

Ghana Politics Today

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