Chieftaincy and Development

Course Coordinator: Rev. Dr. A.A. Akrong

Course Objective

The course will provide Level 200 students with an overview of chieftaincy and related issues and contribute to an appreciation and understanding of traditional leaderships in Africa. It will consider chieftaincy culture and traditional leadership in the contemporary Ghanaian and African context and the actual and potential role of chieftaincy institutions in the development of communities and nation states. It will also encourage students to examine the perceived developmental problems associated with traditional leaderships.
Course Outline
  1. The Concept of Development and Governance; Government and Development.
  2. Types of leaderships in Africa: Traditional and contemporary.
  1. Types of political systems and organization
  2. Features of centralized systems and acephalous systems
  3. Types of leadership: secular, ritual or priestly, elderships
  4. Traditional councils
  5. Civil Organizations
  1. Chieftaincy in the historical perspectives
  1. Pre-colonial perspectives
  2. Chieftaincy era perspectives
  1. Succession and competition for traditional high office.
  1. Modes of succession to high office
  2. Succession disputes
  1. Chieftaincy and inter and intra-ethnic conflicts
  2. Installation rites for chiefs and rites of removal from office
  3. Roles of chiefs:
  4. (a) Traditional roles
    (b) Modern roles and expectations
    (c) Roles in community development

    8. Chieftaincy and the local economy and environment

    9. Chieftaincy, Religion and rituals:
    (a) Articulation with Christianity and Islam
    (b) Taboos and prohibitions
    (c) Ritual performances
    (d) Festivals

    10. Chiefs and modern politics:
    (a) Chiefs and constitutions
    (b) Chiefs and government

    11. Gender and traditional and modern leadership:
    (a) The queen mother
    (b) The female monarch
    (c) Royal women: wives of chiefs, chiefs' sisters, mothers etc.
    (d) The magazia or village women's leader

    12. Challenges facing the institution of chieftaincy:
    (a) Impoverishment and Absenteeism
    (b) Curtailment and usurpation of traditional roles and prerogatives
    (c) Accountability
    (d) Responsibility without power and resources
    (e) Succession Disputes

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