General News of Sunday, 26 February 2017
Sixteen traditional leaders in the Adentan Municipality in the Greater Accra Region have formed a council to serve as a rallying point for discussing common issues of interest and strengthening their positions as traditional leaders.
The creation of the Adentan Municipal Traditional Council is also to enable the traditional leaders to contribute to the rapid socio-economic development of the municipality.
Consequently, the Chief of Ogbojo, Nii Torgbor Obodai II, was elected as the interim Chairman of the council at a meeting held at his palace.
A non-governmental organisation, Intervention Forum, organised the traditional leaders to achieve the feat. The aim of the NGO is to examine the role of traditional authorities in the development planning process of district assemblies.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Intervention Forum, Ms Nora Ollennu, who is also the focal capacity builder for the Adentan Citizens Forum, a sub-project under her outfit, said the chiefs could deal with the socio-economic development gaps better and help the efforts of the Adentan Municipal Assembly (AdMA) to promote good governance if they forged a united front.
She, therefore, urged the chiefs to unite and engage the assembly in its activities so that they could better appreciate the development programmes the assembly was undertaking.
“You need to come together as a traditional council and not remain as separate entities. As chiefs, you need to have plans for your communities and also support the local governance process,” she said.
She also called on the chiefs to attend meetings of the municipal assembly and participate in its programmes.
Additionally, she said, it was essential for the traditional leaders to involve their constituents in the decision-making process to promote social accountability at the community level.
To build the capacity of the traditional leaders in good governance, Madam Ollennu took them through the fundamentals of good governance principles: transparency, participation and accountability; and explained their benefits.
She called on the traditional rulers to adopt and practise the principles to help them in the discharge of their leadership roles effectively.
Sources of funds
The Development Planning Officer of the AdMA, Ms Rebecca Annan, explained the sources of funds for development initiatives by the assembly, which included rates, levies and fines, as well as government and donor funds such as the District Assemblies Common Fund, District Development Fund and Urban Development Fund.
For his part, Nii Obodai said in terms of development of the communities, chiefs within the municipality had been dealt with on individual basis and that had not been helpful, saying that “now we are coming together so when you touch one, you touch all.”
Nii Obodai said the 16 traditional authorities were in 2011 entitled to GH¢5,000 as enshrined in the 1992 Constitution but could not access the fund from the assembly because they had no united front.
He, however, acknowledged that the Ogbojo Traditional Area had seen significant development over the past few years as evidenced by a 21-bed polyclinic at Ogbojo, tarred roads and drainage system, among others.
Other elected members of the council include Nii Okpelor Sowah, Chief of NmaiDzorn, Vice-Chairman; Nii Sai Obodai, Ogbojo Traditional Council’s Financial Secretary as the Secretary; Nii Adjetey Obour, Chief of Amanfro, Treasurer; with Nii Obaayoo, Chief of Adjiriganor, being the Assistant Treasurer.
Emmanuel Nii Martey Korley, Ashaley Botwe Linguist, was also elected Organiser; Nii Sowah Okataban I, Chief of Adentan, and Naa Osantro I, the Fafraha Queenmother, were appointed patrons.