Dr. Arne Wulff, the Resident Representative of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), Ghana Office has advised Ghanaians to uphold their cultural heritage and be conscious of not accepting everything foreign that their culture abhors.
He said there was the need for Ghanaians and Africans, in general, to maintain their own identity by cherishing and allowing their cultural values and traditions to influence their lives for progress.
Dr. Wulff gave the advice when he was speaking at the opening ceremony of the Bono Queen Mothers’ Association’s first annual conference and workshop organised in partnership with the KAS on Wednesday in Sunyani.
The two-day programme on the theme “The Queen Mother in Mediation” was attended by the Paramount Queen Mothers in the region, their counterparts from the Bono East Region, and representatives of the National Queen Mothers’ Platform.
It was designed among others to build the capacity of the participants to position them to effectively adjudicate disputes amicably through the process of mediation in their traditional areas to promote peace and progress.
“We have to keep our own identity”, Dr. Wulff stressed and noted that underpinned the holistic development of the country because no country in the world had ever survived and could survive now without sticking to its own cultural identity.
He noted “Ghana is a nation of mixed religion”, saying that notwithstanding the populace had been co-existing peacefully.
Dr. Wulff attributed that peaceful co-existence to the strong bond of cultural identity and therefore reiterated the need to cherish and maintain “our cultural heritage”.
“Don’t give up your identity, don’t throw away your cultural heritage, don’t accept everything contrary to your traditional beliefs and cultural practices from the western world”, he said.
Dr. Wulff said that being a German, he could not surrender his identity and just accept something foreign that was repugnant to his senses and traditionally acceptable German practices.
Earlier in a welcoming address, Nana Yaa Ansua, the Paramount Queen Mother of Drobo Traditional Area and President of the Association said the role of queen mothers was not limited to the nomination of candidates for selection, election, and installation as chiefs.
Nana Ansua who is also the Executive Secretary of the National Queen Mothers Platform said occupying those influential positions as Paramount Queen Mothers, also required them to play the role of peace builders for the socio-economic advancement of the society.
Accordingly, she stated they needed to be taken through a training workshop as part of the conference to update their skills and competencies for efficient delivery in mediation processes.
The programme chaired by Madam Justina Owusu-Banahene, the Bono Regional Minister was also addressed by Osagyefo Oseadeyo Agyeman Badu II, the Paramount Chief of Dormaa Traditional Area and President of the Bono Regional House of Chiefs and Mr. Alfred Tuah-Yeboah, Deputy Attorney-General and Minister for Justice.