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Traditional chiefs have warned Montserrado County Supt.
Grace Kpan to stop criticizing the Sande and Poro societies, two traditional cultures that predate the founding of the Liberian nation.
“I tell the president thank you for nominating her, but she should give advice to the woman (Kpan) because indigenous daughters of this country cannot venture with our culture and the Sande,” said Chief Zanzan Karwar, head of the Traditional Council of Liberia.
Mrs. Kpan has criticized the Sande (women’s traditional society) calling it evil and announced that the Ministry of Internal Affairs had planned to shut it down.
But Internal Affairs Minister Blamo Nelson, who was initiated into Sande’s male counterpart—the Poro—before he was confirmed, denied the claim.
She made the derogatory statement last May to a UN Security Council delegation headed by Ambassador Susan Rice, U.S. permanent to the United Nations.
Mrs. Kpan has since come under avalanche of criticisms including some from members of the national legislature where senators have twice rejected confirming her.
Addressing a press conference here Tuesday, Chief Karwar said Mrs. Kpan uttered the statement out of ignorance and warned her against repeating it.
“I warn her and any body who does not have regard for our culture. I warn the woman strongly,” he said.
Chief Karwar also urged President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to warn people about their utterances before they get appointed in order to avoid getting in trouble, adding: “We are prepared to carry on the works of government because our people understand us.”
Meanwhile, the head of traditional chiefs called on the legislature to formulate a law that will compel people to have respect for the traditions and cultures of the country.
“The House must pass a law that our Poro and Sande should be given to the traditional people to control it. When people know that that law has been passed, no body can play with it,” he stressed.