Stay Out Of Politics Asantehene -Rejoinder

Sun, 7 Nov 2004 Source: Gyamfi, Michael

I wonder if you cared to read the Asantehene's rebuttal after the publication and subsequent apologies from the editor of the referred to publication. As much as we enjoy reading various views on issues, it is rather distasteful when people who are supposed to know better rather depend on sentiments instead of reason to analyze issues. Ghanaians are now more than matured to read through camouflaged intents and purposes. The hatred, envy and jealousy which led to the 'crucifixion' of the businessmen of a particular tribe should be a thing of the past. Ghanaians should learn to live together as one people.

Now on the actual issues raised. Though the constitution discourages chiefs from meddling in politics, nowhere does it forbid them from giving advice. The Asantehene, according to the rebuttal, and as we have been made aware of, gave a general advice. It was none partisan and apolitical. The Akans have a proverb which translates literally, 'It is the fool that takes advice as insult.' We should try to discern the difference between the two. As to your question as to where Asantehene was when Rawlings was being insulted? When did Rawlings begin to bring such insults upon himself and when did this Asantehene ascend the stool. We should be a bit realistic if we would like to come public with our views. As to Asantehene's frequent visits to the castle, its not like the days when Northern and other chiefs were given peanuts to troop to the castle to pay obeisance to 'his majesty' of the times. First, the Asantehene as any unbiased person has got to know him, is progressive. He travels a lot, not for pleasure but for such kind that secured the IMF loan. It is customary for any chief or prominent person passing through a particular land to pay his respects to the overlord of that land. Is the Presidency not worth paying respect to. We have less prominent people frequenting the castle, but Otumfour does not travel in obscurity, that is why his visits are well noted. Moreover, pretence and hypocrisy would not help. The two are related and know each other before occupying their present positions, do they pretend to ignore each other because of people like you? Lets be realistic. No chief has come out to say that he was turned away from the castle. The open door policy of this government is known to all.

On the IMF loan, may be you are the only one who does not know by now that it was initiated during the time of the previous government and not the Kuffour government as being insinuated. The loan if you are not aware is not for the development of Kumasi. It has been explained that it is to benefit over five Regions, just as the Otumfour educational fund is not for only Asantes.

While it is appreciated that we all cannot see everything from the same perspective, let us try to find a common ground of appreciating each other. The cycle of insults and disrespect is not progressive. This is just what Otumfour was saying.

Michael Gyamfi
356 Stuyvesant Avenue
Irvington, New Jersey 07111

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Columnist: Gyamfi, Michael