Minister for Chieftaincy and Traditional Affairs, Dr Henry Seidu Danaa, has urged chiefs in Ghana to desist from flogging people who fail to honour their summons.
Dr Danaa stated that under the Chieftaincy Amendment Law that is currently in parliament, people who refuse to attend a chief’s summon should be reported to the police and dealt with by the law.
He cautioned that any chief that uses whips on anyone exposes himself to the wrath of the law.
‘If you are a chief and you use ‘abaa’ on someone to compel attendance, you expose yourself to the wrath of the criminal proceedings, a thing that would embarrass not just yourself, your royal family and the chieftaincy institution. I will like to appeal to chiefs to understand that gone are the days when compulsion to summons was by whip,’ he said at a press briefing last Friday.
‘Criminal charges should be pressed against them and the matter trailed in court so that those who are found guilty would be punished accordingly but those who are not guilty can walk away free .We are in a system of justice,’ he added.
It can be recalled that the chief of Nakpanzoo, Abdul Rahman, was recently in the news for allegedly flogging the head teacher of the Lamasheugu Methodist Primary School, Adam Abudu, publicly for refusing to honour his (chief) summon at the Nakpanzoo palace. He is currently facing charges of assault and causing harm while the police investigate the issue.
‘It is unacceptable therefore that anyone should take the law in his or her hands in any way that will endanger lives and property. We would like to draw the attention of chiefs to desist from any such thing because the royal code of ethics does not allow that and it tarnishes the image of chieftaincy and it breaks the law,’ Dr Danaa mentioned.
He disclosed that it was high time chief disgraced those who are critics of the chieftaincy institution but this should not indulge a conduct that would confirm people’s fears.
By Nii Ogbamey Tetteh & Vincent Kubi
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