Chiefs endorsing candidates is politically suicidal – Ransford Gyampo

An Associate Professor at the University of Ghana, has condemned a recent trend of chiefs openly engaging in partisan politics.

Professor Ransford Gyampo said the recent trend, contrary to the constitutional injunction that bars chiefs from openly participating in open politics, is worrying.

“What may not be easily known to many of the chiefs who flout the constitutional injunction is that, they commit political suicide by eroding their own respect, and role as agents of unity.

This comes after some chiefs, including Paramount Chief of Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panin II and Omanhene of Mehame Traditional Area, Nana Owusu Kontoh II openly declared support for some political party Candidates.

At a durbar held in honour of President Akufo-Addo on the second day of his 3-day tour of the Eastern Region, the Okyehene noted that the President has demonstrated that he is, indeed, “a President for all Ghanaians”.

He, therefore, urged Ghanaians to vote him in power to serve another four year term.

Nana Owusu Kontoh II also at a durbar at Mehame in the Asutifi South Constituency of the Ahafo Region, expressed gratitude to former President John Dramani Mahama for ensuring development at Mehame and other communities in the Constituency.

Professor Gyampo, however, says the chiefs are gradually eroding their respect by conducting themselves in this manner.

“They lose their role as countervailing forces and credible mediators in political impasse and conflict. They also lose their convening powers to summon their citizens for communal work.

“They also lose their role as agents of development, as no government will work with a chief who is a known political opponent,” he said.

He added that “the days when uneducated and semi-literates were made chiefs are long gone. Today, our chiefs are highly learned. Some are University Lecturers. Others are Lawyers, Engineers, Medical Doctors, Accountants, etc.

“They are very reasonable and must be called to order, to respect what the constitution say against their quest to do partisan politics. This should be a matter of concern to those of us who are concerned with Ghana’s peace.

“Indeed, this should be a matter of priority to all Ghanaians, as we seek to build a core of unbiased citizenry, who will wield a certain moderating influences, in intervening to help resolve conflicts, when our nation threatens to implode, because of partisan politics,” he added.

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