Crude, Primordial Ordeal


In this day and age, subjecting adults to an ordeal of determining whether they are circumcised or not by stripping them naked, in a nearby

bathroom can only be described as crude and primordial.

We sympathise with the staffers of the National Identification Authority (NIA) over the ordeal they were subjected to at the hands of overzealous traditional people who have allowed themselves to be used as pawns in a political chess game.

The NIA staffers were only at the Gbese Mantse’s Palace to undertake a national assignment, and for an overzealous Chief Priest to introduce an unusual standard in the Ga tradition the way he did is to say the least unacceptable and a complete infringement of the human rights of the individuals.

We have never heard about this standard before and are grateful and relieved that the Gbese Mantse, Nii Okaidja III, cleared the air when he explained that what happened was totally uncalled for.

In his explanation, he did state that the man who arrogated onto himself the power of stripping people naked at the palace erred, as he had no such authority.

We are relieved that there are such as Nii Okaidja willing and ready to ensure the growth of the chieftaincy institution and not those who are ready to sell their conscience for a pittance.

It is a truism that a number of traditional settings which practiced human sacrifices in years gone by have dropped the trend, considering it as paganistic. Traditions, when they are found to be anachronistic and injurious to our human rights, must be dropped totally.

Subjecting the two gentlemen to the esteem-debasing ordeal was avoidable, especially given that they are not Gas and were only there for a brief assignment.

How many visitors to the Gbese Mantse Palace were made to strip naked for manhood inspection in the past?

An inspection of the genitals of an adult by his fellow man not on medical grounds, but rather according to the whims of a Chief Priest, is bullshit.

We should endeavour to make our traditional practices lovable and not those to be shunned with contempt. The Gas have wonderful and modernity-friendly practices, we therefore take umbrage to the introduction of such new and insulting trends in the name of Ga tradition.

The action of the Chief Priest should be condemned unequivocally without mincing words.

It is indeed interesting to note the political undertones in the authority being exercised by the Chief Priest at a time when a Supreme Court order pulled the brakes on such activities until a determination of a case before it.

If what transpired was a trespassing, alongside the infringement of the human rights of the two persons, we ask that the Chief Priest explain himself.

History is replete with many lessons for their perusal.

This divide-and-rule tactics would not lead us to the promised land of peace and unity, two critical prerequisites for development.

The stripping of people naked in the name of non-existent tradition in Ga can only be considered one of the repercussions of wanton interference in chieftaincy matters by unqualified persons, especially politicians, in the name of national security.