Contesting Land and Custom in Ghana

State, Chief and the Citizen

Edited by Janine M. Ubink and Kojo S. Amanor

Edited by Janine M. Ubink and Kojo S. Amanor

Distributed for Leiden University Press

256 pages | 6-3/10 x 9-1/2
Paper $63.50 ISBN: 9789087280475 Published February 2009 For sale only in the United States, its dependencies, the Philippines, and Canada

African policy on customary land relations has become increasingly problematic in the wake of the growing value of residential and agricultural land; in Ghana, land has been the subject of growing commodification which has led to increased attempts by tribal chiefs, earth priests, land users, and governmental actors to redefine “custom,” land ownership, and tenure. This collection of essays critically examines the relationships between customary and statutory tenure, as well as the institutional interactions between the state and traditional authorities, addressing issues of power, accountability, and equity in a number of case studies, as well as accounts of past and contemporary policy.

1. Contesting land and custom in Ghana: Introduction
Kojo Amanor and Janine Ubink
2. Ancestral property: Land, politics and 'the deeds of the ancestors' in Ghana and Cote d'Ivoire
Sara Berry
3. The changing face of customary land tenure
Kojo Amanor
4. Traditional ambiguities and authoritarian interpretations in Sefwi land disputes
Stefano Boni
5. Chiefs, earth priests and the state: Irrigation agriculture, competing institutions and the transformation of land tenure arrangements in Northeastern Ghana
Steve Tonah
6. Customary justice institutions and local Alternative Dispute Resolution: What kind of protection can they offer to customary landholders?
Richard C. Crook
7. Struggles for land in peri-urban Kumasi and their effect on popular perceptions of chiefs and chieftaincy
Janine Ubink
8. Risks and opportunities of state intervention in customary land management: Emergent findings from the land Administration Project Ghana
Julian Quan, Janine Ubink and Adarkwah Antwi
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