General News of Thursday, 9 February 2017
All things being equal, the government of Ghana will increase allowances for paramount chiefs and queens because what they currently receive is paltry, Samuel Kofi Dzamesi, Minister-designate of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, has said.
Speaking during his vetting by the Appointments Committee of parliament on Wednesday February 8, he revealed that paramount chiefs and queens are each respectively given GHS500 and GHS350 monthly, amounts he believes are not befitting of the traditional rulers.
He said: “As we speak, it is better for me to put this in the public domain that a paramount chief as of now takes only GHS500, the queen mother takes GHS350 as an allowance.
“We believe that it is inadequate, but it all depends on the budget and availability of funds. But it is my belief that it is inadequate and if funds are available we should try and increase that money as has been done in the previous government.”
The nominee further revealed that he would be superintending over 352 chieftaincy disputes if approved by the Committee.
He is, however, optimistic that he would be able to deal with these disputes given the rich experience he brings on board.
He said: “If you give me the nod, I am going to the Ministry of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs with 352 disputes.
“But I am coming into that ministry with a lot of experience with resolutions of these disputes. But let me say it here that there are well-defined structures at the ministry to resolve disputes, especially chieftaincy disputes. We have the traditional councils, the Regional House of Chiefs, the National House of Chiefs, and each of these has a judicial committee.
“So if we adhere to the structures very well, a lot of the disputes can be solved. The problem has always been lack of funding and resources for the judicial committees to work with and I believe that if I am given the nod and I go there, we will try as much as possible to reduce these 352 disputes pending before the judicial committees.”