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General News of Tuesday, 15 July 2003

Source: GNA

Don't ridicule the Golden Stool - Asante United Front

Kumasi, July 15, GNA- The Asante United Front, a pressure group in Kumasi, has advised media practitioners and politicians to desist from dragging the name of the Golden Stool and its occupant the Asantehene to public ridicule.

It said the youth of Asante would not sit down unconcerned for some individuals and groups to embarrass the King and would, therefore, use any means to protect the Golden Stool and Asanteman.

Mr Charles Wilberforce Nuakoh, Executive Secretary of the Front, was speaking at a news conference in Kumasi on Tuesday, in reaction to recent negative comments in some media, calculated to tarnish the name of Asantehene.

"Asantes have enough and it is about time we made sure nobody got the chance to take underserved liberties on our King and elders", he cautioned, adding that, Asantehene was above national politics and as such nobody should try to push him into politics.

Mr Nuakoh said Asantehene was nobody's playmate and as such nobody should throw greetings and messages to him directly. "Any media practitioner, groups and individuals who want information from the palace must apply for the necessary accreditation''.

Mr Nuako also expressed concern about the perception in some quarters that everybody who had an Akan name was an Asante. He said what was more disturbing and sometimes unfortunate was the fact that anytime, anybody heard an Akan name mentioned in connection with a responsible position, many people link such a name to Asante.

"The unfortunate situation has resulted in a seemingly discrimination against Asantes when it comes to appointment to responsible public offices", Mr Nuakoh said.

He said such a situation had greatly affected the development of the Ashanti Region and called for equity in the sharing of national wealth.

Mr Nuakoh criticised the government for its delay in reverting the Part One Land to its owner, the Asantehene and said the continued delay might greatly undermine the people's confidence in the government. Mr Nuakoh called on the Asante Youth Association (AYA), Asante Students' Union (ASU), Asante Congress, Asante Kotoko Society and all other Asante Youth Groups to wake up and join in the battle to fight against their detractors.