Tuesday, 20 May 2014

15th Anniversary Of Asantehene Osei Tutu

This year's Akwasidaekese of the Chiefs and people of Ashanti will go down in history as one of the most patronised and significant. The joy and ecstasy that characterised the event will forever, be memorable.

The great Ashanti Kingdom has every cause to celebrate Sunday`s Akwasidaekese as it climaxed activities marking the 15th
Anniversary of the coronation of Otumfuo Osei Tutu as Asantehene.

The month of May and indeed May 06 this year marked the 64th birthday of the much revered Ashanti Leader, Otumfuo Osei Tutu. It is significant to note that unlike many traditional leaders, Otumfuo Osei Tutu`s reign covers the entire Ashanti region, parts of Brong Ahafo and the Worawora district of the Volta Region.

Born Barima Kwaku Duah, Otumfuo Osei Tutu`s 15 years on the golden stool has not benefited only Ashantis but the entire Ghanaian society. His wisdom,
thought provoking speeches and sterling leadership qualities have been widely acclaimed. He has helped to shape and preserve the rich Ashanti culture which he inherited from his forebears.

Today chieftaincy in Ashanti is held in high esteem globally. As the 16th occupant of the golden stool, Otumfuo Osei Tutu in his 15 years on the throne has had cordial relations with almost all Ghana`s Heads of state. So close is his relationship with the sitting Head of State John Dramani Mahama that rumours recently went flying that he helped to secure victory for him in the December 2012 election petition before the Supreme Court.

Reacting to some of these allegations, Otumfuo Osei Tutu noted that he will not be distracted by any unfounded speculations peddled by sections of the society against him.

To him, he supports any ruling government regardless of which
political party is in power. According to Otumfuo, his duty as a traditional ruler is to help the government of the day to advance the socio-economic well being of the people, especially in the areas of job creation, provision of quality formal education and other social
amenities.

According to Former President, Jerry John Rawlings, Otumfuo Osei Tutu`s political acumen is sharp and impressive, Former President John Agyekum Kufuor lauds his forthrightness in confronting
major traditional and national issues describing it as incisive.

President Mahama praises him for bringing creativity into the chieftaincy institution. Over the past 15 years Otumfuo has visited almost all the continents of the world to receive awards and most of his travels were at the invitation of other monarchs, governments, corporate bodies, institutions of higher learning and international organisations.

Just recently the University of Professional Studies in Accra at a special congregation conferred its highest honour of a doctorate degree on Otumfuo. This is in recognition of his exemplary
contribution to the growth of education in the country and also as an alumnus.

Just 17 months into his reign Otumfuo Osei Tutu established the Asanteman Education Endowment Fund which has helped in educating many brilliant but needy students. In 2006 he was appointed Chancellor of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, KNUST.

The list can be endless but suffice it to say, Otumfuo Osei Tutu has been an inspiration. He received a standing ovation when he delivered the 2013 democracy lectures organised by the National Commission on Civic Education. His call on the media to lift itself out of mediocrity and become a beacon of light and hope for the people is not misplaced. Today as we eulogise Otumfuo Osei Tutu on his stewardship and high standard of leadership, it would be prudent to urge contemporary chiefs to emulate him.

His call for national unity  at his coronation anniversary durbar at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium on Sunday could not have come at a better time.

This is at a time the nation is polarised along political lines and practically everything is looked at with political lenses. Ghana definitely cannot forge ahead on a divided front. We need every body to get on board the national reconstruction effort. No political party or government is a repository of wisdom.

We need national consensus and collaboration in our development aspiration. Ghana is neither for the NDC nor NPP.

We all have a stake in its forward march. As we commend Otumfuo Osei Tutu on a reign well - served, it is incumbent on us to count our blessings as a nation and not our mishaps.

The Chieftaincy institution must be a focal point for development and not litigation. The numerous chieftaincy cases pending in our courts are a disincentive.

We say Ayekoo to Otikorkorso Nana Asantehene, may he live long to be a light for our path, a guide to our national aspirations. There can be nothing better than that.

BY JUSTICE MINGLE A JOURNALIST

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