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13.02.2006 General News

Gbese Mantse to be buried before Homowo

By GNA

Accra, Feb. 13, GNA - Mr Emmanuel Nii Adama Thompson, Acting Dzase Tse (Principal Kingmaker) of the Gbese Stool, Dynasty of the Ga State, on Monday said plans were afoot to bury the late Gbese Mantse, Nii Ayitey Agbofu II, before the Homowo festival in April-May this year to make way for the installation of a new one.

He told journalists that after the death of Nii Ayitey Agbofu II four years ago, the Gbese stool had been plagued with lawsuits and controversies regarding the legitimacy of the late chief and whether he deserved to be accorded a royal burial.

"Even though I was not here to witness his installation 20 years ago, available records show that he was gazetted, represented the stool at the Ga Traditional Council, presided over cases at the National House of Chiefs and performed other functions, which confirm his legitimacy," he said.

Mr Thompson said, added to that controversy was the claim by one of the three eligible royal ruling houses, Nii Akwetey Krobo Saki We, that their house was skipped in the past on grounds of their inability to provide an eligible candidate.

He admitted that indeed that house was skipped for the said reasons, saying that as the principal kingmaker, he had no qualms with returning to that house to select the next Gbese Mantse but the laid down procedure for installing a chief in Gbese must be followed to the letter.

"The installation of the next chief should be carried out in accordance with the eight-point succession arrangement of 1941 that was duly registered," he said at a press conference to spell out the process of installing a chief in Gbese.

"We hope to bury the late chief before the maize planting and Homowo period to pave the way for the installation of a new Gbese Mantse," he said.

Mr Thompson said it had come to the notice of the Dzase (Kingmakers) that some characters were trying to circumvent the process and install a chief, adding that any person, whose installation was short of the laid down procedures, would not be recognised.

He said the said characters had indeed demanded that the Gbese Palace and the royal regalia should be submitted to them with immediate effect, but that, in reference to the procedure would amount to "putting the cat before the horse".

The Principal Kingmaker named the three eligible royal ruling houses in Gbese as Pensiaku We (Shia Wulu), Nii Tetteh Ankama We and Nii Akwetey Krobo Saki We and said a nominee from the house whose turn it was to provide a candidate, should have the support of that whole royal ruling house and at least 30 or more signatories from that house. "The Candidate that is to be nominated for enstoolment as Gbese Mantse should come only from the paternal lineage of the eligible royal ruling house," he said.

Mr Thompson said: "a candidate so nominated would be screened and approved by the Kingmakers and declared Gbese Mantse elect if he passes the screening test successfully."

"The new Gbese Mantse with a stool name and title will be presented to the Ga Traditional Council to be received by the Ga Mantse and the council members before taking his rightful traditional position with the council as Gbese Mantse and Adonten (Field Marshall) of the Ga state," he said.

He assured the sons and daughters of Gbese that the traditional leaders would ensure that the right things were done to safeguard the traditions of Gbese, prevent further litigation and forestall the problem of double chiefs in Gbese. 13 Feb. 06

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