Landscaper Leaving Canada to Become a King in Ghana

'OK. No problem. I will talk to my boss'
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 20, 2015 6:22 PM CST
Eric Manu is leaving his landscaping job in Canada to became the chief of his 6,000-member tribe in Ghana.   (Facebook)

(Newser) – A 32-year-old landscaper is leaving Canada to become the king of a 6,000-person tribe in Ghana, the National Post reports. Eric Manu—who's been living in British Columbia for the past three years—got the surprising phone call in July. “So I said, ‘OK. No problem. I will talk to my boss.’” His boss, Susan Watson, was more than fine with it, and Manu plans to return to Ghana in December, according to the Huffington Post. He'll later be joined by his wife and 10-month-old son. The National Post reports Manu moved to Canada after marrying a Canadian woman he met in Ghana. His uncle, who had been chief of the Akan tribe, died in 2013, and the discussions about who would replace him took more than a year. The Huffington Post reports Manu was surprised he was offered the position, believing himself too young to be chief, whose duties include settling disputes over land and personal matters and overseeing any political decisions.

But he tells the National Post there was no chance he was going to turn it down. “If you deny that, it means the inheritance has to go to a different tribe or family and we will lose that for the rest of your life,” Manu says. “If I deny that, I am denying my ancestors—that’s something you worked for and inherited for years and years." Thanks to Watson, Manu won't be showing up empty-handed. Watson started the To the Moon and Back Foundation, collecting laptops, sewing machines, bicycles, school supplies, and more for Manu's tribe. Eventually she and Manu hope to use the charity to bring volunteers to Ghana to give vocational training to the women of his tribe. As for his Canadian wife, she becomes a "queen of the king," Manu tells GlobalNews. "The mother of all mothers of the village." The plan is to split their time between Canada and Ghana. (Read more Ghana stories.)

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