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Asantehene is angry - A rejoinder

Mon, 2 Oct 2006 Source: Jeffrey, Peter Nee

For Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu to publicly come out to voice his frustrations at those who are bent on dragging his name into the cocaine saga is a very sad day for the country.
Like most modern monarchies around the world, Nana is above politics and thus is widely consulted for his wise advice and for inspiration in times of crisis. Where ever he goes or visits, Nana is seen as the face of modern Ghana and he represents us all. People may agree or disagree with this notion, but Nana never discriminates against any tribe in Ghana when it comes to his dealings with officialdom, both at home and abroad. There are some notable traditional rulers who are members of political parties, however there are also certain major rulers who are barred by tradition to side with any one particular political party – these are the Omanhenes, including the Ya Na. They are seen as the fathers and custodians of our tradition and culture. Their tasks can get very heavy. They sacrifice all comfort and privacy when they ascend onto the throne. Yes people may argue that they know what they were going in for…..and so what? But folks, enough is enough. Playing the tribal card does not help anyone. It rather damages relationship between groups.
Since ascending onto the Ashanti throne, Nana has launched various charities to benefit every child in Ghana, especially his “Otumfuo Education Fund”. Because of his status, traditions prevent him to respond directly to those who have been throwing mud at him. This is very sad indeed, for he is among the current young monarchs who are using their office to help uplift the poor in their homelands. Nana goes round the world to canvas for much needed funds to support his numerous charities that benefits most people in Ghana.
This writer has followed closely the work of Otumfuo since he was installed as the Ashantihene and is marvelled at how hard he works for Ghana. Some commentators criticised him when he met World Bank officials and was granted funds to support his education fund. Yet the Fund helps numerous Ghanaian children by giving scholarships to the bright, including children from this writer’s home town of Sekondi in the Western Region of Ghana. In his quest to ensure many Ghanaian children get decent education, Nana’s education fund does not discriminate against children from different tribes residing in the Ashanti region or the other regions that the Fund operates.
Other traditional rulers including Osagyefuo Nana Amotia Ofori Panin II and Togbe Afede Asor, who had lived and work in West, including some of the major Multi National Corporations in the world are using their contacts and influence gained in the cooperate community to attract investments into the country, not only to benefit one specific region but to benefit all Ghanaians. These young monarchs have seen how countries in South East Asia that a few decades ago were much poorer than Ghana but are now classified as middle income countries, and want us to emulate them. The only way to achieve rapid growth is through hard work and sensibly economic management, including setting realistic targets to reduce poverty and building human and physical infrastructures.
Their periodic interventions in national issues should not be construed as unnecessary intrusions but rather as part of their civic duty to voice out their concerns when things are going wrong. Like priests they have got duty of care to their subjects, and in the case of the prominent nananom their duty of care covers the whole country.
One such important intervention was by Tobge Asor (14th January 2005), when he called for transparency and honesty by public servants. Nana was among those powerful voices that called for the government to address the doctors and nurses grievances to stop the “brain drain” tide in our motherland. Nananom cannot sit ideally.
Unlike the royals of years gone by who were not respected by many and often accused of bazaar land dealings, these younger royals are different. The service they provide to the state is beyond reproach. Those hiding behind the media to abuse the chieftaincies in our motherland should be ashamed of themselves. I am not here defending those rulers who abuse their office but to highlight the importance of the institution of chieftaincy to our national development. People should stop hiding behind the media to discredit our hard working nananom. Tribalism won’t get us anywhere. Kosovo, Bosnia and Rwanda are recent examples of what can go wrong.
I am not a great fan of the institution but that does not mean I have to criticise any prominent Omanhene at any given opportunity. They play a very useful role in our societies. In addition to tourism they drive development in their areas of jurisdictions. And that alone should be enough to leave them alone.



Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.

For Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu to publicly come out to voice his frustrations at those who are bent on dragging his name into the cocaine saga is a very sad day for the country.
Like most modern monarchies around the world, Nana is above politics and thus is widely consulted for his wise advice and for inspiration in times of crisis. Where ever he goes or visits, Nana is seen as the face of modern Ghana and he represents us all. People may agree or disagree with this notion, but Nana never discriminates against any tribe in Ghana when it comes to his dealings with officialdom, both at home and abroad. There are some notable traditional rulers who are members of political parties, however there are also certain major rulers who are barred by tradition to side with any one particular political party – these are the Omanhenes, including the Ya Na. They are seen as the fathers and custodians of our tradition and culture. Their tasks can get very heavy. They sacrifice all comfort and privacy when they ascend onto the throne. Yes people may argue that they know what they were going in for…..and so what? But folks, enough is enough. Playing the tribal card does not help anyone. It rather damages relationship between groups.
Since ascending onto the Ashanti throne, Nana has launched various charities to benefit every child in Ghana, especially his “Otumfuo Education Fund”. Because of his status, traditions prevent him to respond directly to those who have been throwing mud at him. This is very sad indeed, for he is among the current young monarchs who are using their office to help uplift the poor in their homelands. Nana goes round the world to canvas for much needed funds to support his numerous charities that benefits most people in Ghana.
This writer has followed closely the work of Otumfuo since he was installed as the Ashantihene and is marvelled at how hard he works for Ghana. Some commentators criticised him when he met World Bank officials and was granted funds to support his education fund. Yet the Fund helps numerous Ghanaian children by giving scholarships to the bright, including children from this writer’s home town of Sekondi in the Western Region of Ghana. In his quest to ensure many Ghanaian children get decent education, Nana’s education fund does not discriminate against children from different tribes residing in the Ashanti region or the other regions that the Fund operates.
Other traditional rulers including Osagyefuo Nana Amotia Ofori Panin II and Togbe Afede Asor, who had lived and work in West, including some of the major Multi National Corporations in the world are using their contacts and influence gained in the cooperate community to attract investments into the country, not only to benefit one specific region but to benefit all Ghanaians. These young monarchs have seen how countries in South East Asia that a few decades ago were much poorer than Ghana but are now classified as middle income countries, and want us to emulate them. The only way to achieve rapid growth is through hard work and sensibly economic management, including setting realistic targets to reduce poverty and building human and physical infrastructures.
Their periodic interventions in national issues should not be construed as unnecessary intrusions but rather as part of their civic duty to voice out their concerns when things are going wrong. Like priests they have got duty of care to their subjects, and in the case of the prominent nananom their duty of care covers the whole country.
One such important intervention was by Tobge Asor (14th January 2005), when he called for transparency and honesty by public servants. Nana was among those powerful voices that called for the government to address the doctors and nurses grievances to stop the “brain drain” tide in our motherland. Nananom cannot sit ideally.
Unlike the royals of years gone by who were not respected by many and often accused of bazaar land dealings, these younger royals are different. The service they provide to the state is beyond reproach. Those hiding behind the media to abuse the chieftaincies in our motherland should be ashamed of themselves. I am not here defending those rulers who abuse their office but to highlight the importance of the institution of chieftaincy to our national development. People should stop hiding behind the media to discredit our hard working nananom. Tribalism won’t get us anywhere. Kosovo, Bosnia and Rwanda are recent examples of what can go wrong.
I am not a great fan of the institution but that does not mean I have to criticise any prominent Omanhene at any given opportunity. They play a very useful role in our societies. In addition to tourism they drive development in their areas of jurisdictions. And that alone should be enough to leave them alone.



Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.

Columnist: Jeffrey, Peter Nee

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