A private legal practitioner says it is true that customs are essential, however, a custom that goes contrary to the law is void and cannot be recognised.
Albert Gyamfi, who is with Totoe Legal Services, said this while explaining the significance of one’s customary practices against the law with regard to the acquisition of the properties of a dead person.
According to him, the law is supreme over everything and, therefore, the properties of the deceased cannot be meddled with using one’s customs as an excuse.
“Ghana is a country that is governed by the rule of law so if you look at the laws of Ghana, although the laws of Ghana recognise customary law as part of the laws of Ghana, a custom that is contrary to law, in other words, an act of parliament, the CI, the LI, or the constitution is void”.
“And as such if there is a customary practice that sins against PNDC Law 111 which is considered to be an existing law and has the same status as an act of Parliament, that custom is void, it cannot be recognised as part of customary laws in Ghana,” he said.
Speaking on the Joy News’ The Law, Mr Gyamfi indicated that Ghana is not governed by any form of spirituality or scripture and again if there is any scripture that is contrary to the laws of Ghana, then it cannot be applicable.
“As such, it is only the PNDC Law 111, the Wills Act, the Administrative of Estate Act and other such laws that governs the distribution of properties of a deceased person and that cultural and religious practices do not come into play,” he explained.