Mr Lucie Blay, sister of Freddie Blay, a former Chairperson of the New Patriotic Party, has been enstooled as the new Queen Mother of the Supomu-Dunkwa Community of the Shama District of the Western Region.
She now bears the stool name: Nana Opetse II and takes after her predecessor who reigned for many decades in the same Community.
Her coronation was one spectacular moment amid rich cultural display, incessant gunshots, traditional drumming, and dancing and, asafo displays to remind the younger generation that Ghana indeed had traditions, customs and social values that must be preserved.
Various forms of the Ghanaian Kente cloth sown in different shapes and styles were elegantly won by both the old and young to give a rainbow atmosphere that inspired a new dawn of rulership based on hope for community development.
Dignitaries including, Nana Kobena Nketsiah V, Paramount Chief of Essikado, Nana Hemaa Dekyi, paramount Chief of Upper Dixcove, Nana Kojo Kondua VII, chief of Elmina, Mr. Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, Western Regional Minister, Mr. Freddie Blay, former National Chairman of the NPP, Mr. Stephen Asamoah Boateng, the Chieftaincy Minister and Mr. Dan Botwe among others bore witness to the memorial ceremony in the annals of the traditional council in the Shama District and the Region as a whole.
Nana Nkenyimako IV, the Chief of Shama- Graveldo called on the Government to restore “lost” powers of the chieftaincy institution back to promote local development.
She said, “now you cannot summon your own subjects to communal labour or even demand accountability or apply punitive measures all in the name of democracy and I know my right syndrome“.
Nana Nkenyimako IV, therefore implored the Chieftaincy Ministry to impress on the President to revert the current sociocultural mishap to restore confidence in the chieftaincy system as of old and ensure that citizens become increasingly responsive.
Nana Kojo Konduah VII, Chief of Elmina called on the Queen mother to help to resolve the many Chieftaincy challenges in the community.
He said, “I know you are capable and will use your motherly instinct to bring all the chiefs in the traditional Council together and ensure that the rightful family elect a Chief to head the Paramountcy.”
Nana Kobena Nketsiah V, Omanhene of Essikado Traditional Area, urged her to become a mother to all, adding, “rejuvenate the comrade spirit of leadership to spur development.”
Mr. Stephen Asamoah Boateng, the chieftaincy minister who was nurtured some four decades ago by the Queen’s Mother shared fond memories of their living in those days.
He said he was grateful to the Blays for shouldering him and other young Ghanaian students when all hopes were lost.
Turning attention to chieftaincy matters, he noted the amendment processes on the 2008 Chieftaincy Acts which sought to address some concerns in that cycle.
He encouraged chiefs to also avoid mixing chieftaincy with politics to maintain the dignity of that great institution.
The chieftaincy minister said there would also be reshuffle of registrars in the various councils and houses of chiefs and the creation of a dedicated fund to help chiefs undertake localized projects that addressed peculiar issues.
Mr. Dan Botwe, the Minister for Local Government shared fond memories of how the new Queen saved he and other young men from the NUGS who went on exile in Côte d’Ivoire adding, “Lawyer Lucie Blay is a very good soul with a good heart.”
He continued: “we have come as family members after forty years of saving our lives to share in this memorable day… myself and Asamoah Boateng and the rest are forever grateful to you, Atta Maame and all the family members who hosted us and made life worthwhile for us.”
A Lucie Blay Education Fund was instituted with GHS 100,000 seed money by Mr. Dan Botwe and Stephen Asamoah Boateng and others.
The Western Regional Minister, Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah said, “l am very aware of how knowledgeable and experienced you are in all spheres of society…please use this to serve this community.”
He expressed concern about the packet of chieftaincy issues in the Shama District adding, “the gateway to our Region cannot be one without a leader to man.”
The Minister later assured the community of teacher’s quarters to ensure teacher retention in the community.
Nana Opetse II, the newly enstooled Queen Mother, promised to immediately fix challenges in the education of the girlchild, build teachers and nurses quarters and advocate the upgrading of the prosthetic centre into a modern hospital.
She was part of a team of professionals who drafted the 1992 constitution and served as a Minister in the early regimes of the country.
She is a lawyer of great repute both local and international and had worked with many international organizations including the American Embassy in Côte d’Ivoire.