Speaker questions 1992 Constitution regarding chiefs barred from active politics

Speaker of Parliament Alban S. K. Bagbin says he does not agree with the provision in the 1992 Constitution which bans chiefs from participating in active politics.

He argues that chiefs are the custodians of the land and thus there should be a possibility of creating space to allow chiefs, religious leaders and civil society organizations to play active role in the politics of the country.

The Speaker made these remarks on Tuesday, June 13 when he paid a courtesy call on the King of Dagbon, Ya-Naa Abukari II, as part of Parliament’s 30th anniversary celebration.

The Speaker, while touting the contribution of traditional rulers to development of the country, said he does not agree with the 1992 Constitution which bans chiefs from participating in active politics.

“The real leadership of our society are the traditional rulers and so how can we run a government when we say that the true leaders of the society should not participate in governance.

“This is a clear indication from me that I don’t agree with the 1992 Constitution on the prohibition of chiefs from politics, whatever that means, the Supreme Court has trouble to explain it to us.”

He called for a rethink into that provision to allow chiefs, religious leaders and civil society groups to contribute to the politics of the country.

“I want us to look at the possibility of creating space for our chiefs, religious leaders and civil society leaders to play active politics in this country.”

The Speaker, as part of activities marking 30 years of Parliament’s uninterrupted democracy under the Fourth Republic, is meeting with some prominent chiefs in the northern regions.

He earlier paid a courtesy call on the Nayiri, Naa Abdulai Sheriga Mahami Bohagu.

He eulogized the Nayiri for maintaining peace in his kingdom and with his neighbours.

The Speaker is expected to end his tour of the north with a visit to the Yagbonwura, the Wa Naa and the Navro pio.

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