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General News Tue, 2 Sep 1997

Akuoko Sarpong Calls For Cooperation Between Political and Traditional Authorities

Tema, Aug. 27, - Nana Akuoko Sarpong, Presidential Staffer for Chieftaincy Affairs, today called for co-operation between the district political authority and traditional authorities. He was speaking at a seminar organised by the Tema Municipal Assembly (TMA) for chiefs in the Municipality at Tema as part of activities marking the Homowo festival. Nana Akuoko Sarpong said the main problems facing the country are providing decent housing, making health accessible and poverty alleviation. To achieve these goals, there must be harmonious relationship between the district assemblies and chiefs because chieftaincy is still a powerful partner in governance, he said. His topic was "The role of chiefs in local government administration". Nana Sarpong said chieftaincy has a vital role in ensuring public order and stability since the institution is culturally grounded in the day to day life of the country. This explains why the request of the national house of chiefs for 30 per cent of nominated members of district assemblies to be given to direct representatives of chiefs was granted. Nana Sarpong said directives are to be issued to district assemblies to consult traditional rulers in the location of development projects financed with the district assemblies common fund. Miss Doris Ocansey, deputy chairman of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), noted that democratization and modernisation have undermined the position of the Chief. She spoke about the influence of chieftaincy in the maintenance of peace and order and added that chiefs have an important role to play in the decentralisation policy. Miss Ocansey called on Chiefs to make their traditional wisdom and experience available to the district assemblies. Nii Armah Ashietey, municipal chief executive, in a welcoming address, said the seminar is to broaden the horizon of traditional authorities on the decentralisation process and their role in the proper utilisation of land. Nii Adjei Kraku the second, Tema Mantse, chaired the function.

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