Monday, November 26, 2007

Ga Mantse Files ‘No Case’ Suit

By Edmund Mingle, Dodowa

Monday, 26 November 2007

Counsel for the Ga Mantse, Nii Tackie Tawiah III, on Friday filed a submission of no case, praying the judicial committee of the Greater Accra House of Chiefs at Dodowa to throw out a case in which his eligibility to the stool has been challenged.

The suit is in the name of Nii Owula Kpakpa Blofonyo, the Ga State Akwashong Mantse (supreme warrior).

Making the submission after the panel, chaired by Nii Tetteh Otu II, president of the house, had given him the go ahead, the counsel, Willie Amarfio, argued that the petitioner lacked capacity to bring the case against the Ga Mantse, also called Dr. Jo Blankson.

Nii Blofonyo is challenging the nomination and installation of Dr. Blankson as Ga Mantse, claiming the nomination and installation did not follow Ga custom.

Mr. Amarfio said section 66 of the Chieftaincy Act required that a petitioner should be clothed with authority as a kingmaker to be able to petition for destoolment.

Although the counsel for the panel, Samuel Klayson, reminded him that the petition of Nii Blofonyo was not for destoolment, Mr. Amarfio said upholding the petition would, in effect, result in the destoolment of the Ga Mantse.

"If you cannot appoint, you can not disappoint," he stated, describing the petition as "useless."

He said the petition was deficient in the sense that it was not signed by the petitioner personally for him to vouch for the contents but the panel’s counsel reminded him again that it was not legally wrong for the petitioners counsel to sign for his client.

But Mr. Amarfio countered that the counsel for the petitioner, Adu Gyamfi Boadu, who signed the petition is an Ashanti and therefore knew nothing about Ga custom.

In addition, he said, the petition did not provide names and address of witnesses for the hearing, saying, "We only came here for them to surprise us with their witnesses."

Attacking the petitioner’s capacity, he said the office of Ga State Akwashong Mantse and Asere Akwashongtse do not exist and are not recognised by the Ga Traditional Council, adding that that was why he had not been provided a seat at the Council.

"He should have fought the Ga Traditional Council for disallowing him in the house before attempting to fight the installation of the Ga Mantse," he said.

He said the position of the Akwashong Mantse who led troops to war in the past has become defunct because there were no more wars to fight by the Ga State.

He argued that even if the positions exist, the holders do not have the capacity to make or unmake a Ga Mantse.

He also described as fraudulent a certificate of recognition from the National House of Chiefs tendered in by the petitioner and wondered how the National House of Chiefs could recognise him when the Ga Traditional Council does not.

Counsel for the petitioner is expected to respond to the submission when hearing resumes on December 12.

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