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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Matriliny and the New Intestate Succession Law of Ghana
Author:Awusabo-Asare, Kofi
Periodical:Canadian Journal of African Studies
Geographic term:Ghana
customary law
family law
marriage law
law of inheritance
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Women's Issues
Law, Human Rights and Violence
Cultural Roles
Marital Relations and Nuptiality
Law, Legal Issues, and Human Rights
Status of Women
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/485589
Abstract:In June 1985, the government of Ghana promulgated four laws on marriage and intestate succession: the Intestate Succession Law, the Customary Marriage and Divorce (Registration) Law, the Administration of Estate (Amendment) Law, and the Head of Family (Accountability) Law. The laws are the latest in a series dating back to 1884 meant to change customary marriage and intestate succession in Ghana. This article reviews the types of marriage in Ghana and the Akan customary system of intestate succession, compares the devolution of self-acquired intestate property under the 'new' law with that of the Marriage Ordinance, and highlights the implications of the laws for the administration of self-acquired intestate property among the matrilineal Akan. It shows that the laws undermine the Akan view of property and production relations, but that changes in Ghanaian society have necessitated an appraisal of marriage and succession to self-acquired intestate property which takes cognizance of these changes, notably in respect of the status of women and the fate of children born into marriages contracted between Akan men and non-Akan women. Bibliogr., notes, sum. in French.