The Asona stool of Akuapem is demanding the outdooring of a new Paramount Chief of Akuapem.
The gate claims customary laws were not followed in installing Odehye Kwadwo Kesseh as Okuapehene.
They expressed these at a press conference last week.
PRESS CONFERENCE ON VALIDITY OF INSTALLATION OF ODEHYE KWADWO KESSEH ANTWI AS OKUAPEHENE
Asa result of the vacancy created by the the demise of our beloved Okuapehene, Oseasdeeyo Addo Dankwa III, it became necessary to fill the vacancy.
We, under-signed Asona stool occupant of Akuapem therefore had a specific tradition\customary duty to perform by assisting and advising the Okuapehemea in the customary “Ahenetoto” procedure of nomination of the qualified and proper fit candidate to ascend the stool to occupy the vacant position.
Considering the existing lines of succession applicable to Akuapem stool and its procedures that were documented and gazette under L. I 20\60 of 1960. The establishment of the Chieftaincy institution in1971; with the prescribed core duties of the institution under the Chieftaincy Act 370 of 1971, as well as its enactment, rules and amendments.
The Articles of 270 -277 of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana that guaranteed the institutions of Chieftaincy together with its traditional councils as established by Customary Law and usage with its duties, as well as series of Chieftaincy questionnaires that were periodically prepared and submitted by the Chieftaincy Research Project for completion by the Traditional Councils on the compilation of lines of succession applicable to the various school in the country.
We have taken consideration all the requisite in respect of the Akuapem Stool so that we would able to perform the required duties perfectly and assiduously without any room of criticism.
The documented customary procedure relating to the nominations, election and installation of a candidate to ascend the Akuapem Stool as Okuapehene requires that ,We quote ; “when the Paramount stool of Akuapem becomes vacant, it is alienable duty of the Gyasehene of Akuapem to assume the command of summoning together the Ankobeafo through the Anokobeahene , the Gyasefo Stool Carriers and other responsible persons who customarily have some specific functions to perform in time of election of a Paramount Chief. These people are all invited through their respective heads. The Krontihene also invited by the Gyasehene of Akuapem accordingly. This meeting takes place at the Ahemfi Samtewase. Having all the the above responsible persons, the Gyasehene at meeting requests the Krontihene to go to the the Queenmother for a candidate to the vacant stool. The Krontihene in turns to delivers the message through the linguist of Asona Elders. The message is passed on to the Queen mother who in turn fixes a date for the nomination of the candidate”
The document procedure requires that “ The Queen mother at the early hour of the date fixed invites all the (10) Asona Stool occupant “ namely :”Asonahene, Aboasehene, Benkum kyeame , Ohene of Amanokrom, Kodumasehene, Aboasahene, Ayesu, Akwagyan Sabu-Asona(Twafo), Akrahene, Osomanya of Aburi, Mankrado of Ahwerase who all act in advisory capacity to the Queen mother. At this meeting the customary procedure “Ahentoto” is adopted and a proper fit person is nominated for the presentation to the Gyasefo and Anobeafo. ” Unquote.
However, when it was observed that some of the laid down customary procedures we missing, and in trying to go strictly by the documented laid down customary procedures, series of communication were exchanged between the MUNISEC through the Municipal Chief Executive of the Akuapem North Municipal Assembly, Ag. President of the Akuapem Traditional Council, and are copied to the Queen mother and ten (10) Asona Stool occupants.
Furthermore, in accordance with institution of Chieftaincy in Ghana. The Future authored by our beloved Okuapehene, Osedeeyo Addo Dankwa III, at page115 under; The role of the Queen mother in Nominations- we quote “in the Akan tradition set-up, it is necessary, as far as possible, that the blood relation of the original heads of family, whose memory is preserved with the original Black Stool;be chosen a chief at all times . To make sure that this arrangement is strictly adhered to, the Queen mother, who is deemed or accepted as the “mother” of a would-be chief, is made to one of her true ”sons“ to be elected as chief. Since it is generally agreed that, “only mothers know, the Queen mother, the traditional “mother” of a would-be chief, is made to identify one of her true “sons” to be elected as chief. Since it is generally agreed that, “only mothers know, the Queen mother, the traditional “mother” is allowed to exercise the prerogative of nominating the candidates for the elders to decide his suitabily. Male members of the family under the matrilineal inheritance system are not normally credited with full knowledge of the circumstances surrounding the birth of a royal. Therefore they cannot theoretically challenge the Queen mother’s decision.
Male Members of the family consequently act always in the nomination in an advisory capacity’’.
More so, at page 116 of the same book under;-Kingmakers and the Queen mother– and we quote- ‘’after nomination, the candidate selected is sent to the Kingmakers who have the customary right to accept or reject. The Queen mother’s candidate is in most cases accepted as a full royal. However, an objection on the grounds that the nominee is not qualified to occupy the high office, if proved, may be sustained. To avoid possible embarrassment to the Queen mother, she is advised to hold consultation with all interested parties before the nominee’s name is made public’’.
However, at page 114 of the book, it is stated categorically that: ‘’the only occasion where the Queen mother is by law forced to take the advice of other female Abusuapanyin is in respect of a situation where a rotation system duly recognized by the law exists. I have used the phrase ‘’duly recognized’’ advisedly because it is necessary that any stool that practices the rotation system should make sure such a system is backed by a legislative instrument’’.
It is also stated at page 118 of the same book that, ‘’in situation where there is a legally backed rotation system, the Queen mother’s prerogative to nominate diminishes; she is bound to consult the Abrewatia or Head of the Female section of the Gate which has to produce a candidate. If the Queen mother fails to consult the Female Head of the Gate, which has to provide a female candidate, the Female Head of that Gate can challenge the Queen mother at any appropriate tribunal. Again, where there is a disagreement between the Queen mother and the Kingmakers, either the Queen mother or the Kingmakers can go to a tribunal to resolve the issue’’.
Therefore, with the existing laws, rules, the gazette notice under L. I 32 covering by the declaration of customary law (Akuapem State) Order L.I 20/60 of 1960. This means that the Queen mother is duty bound to consult the Abrewatia of the Sakyibea House or Gate to provide her with the qualified candidate for the nomination. We should like to point out that all attempts made by the Abrewatia of the Sakyibea Royal Gate to have the Queen mother accept her candidate for the nomination at her meeting with the ten (10) Asona Stool occupants who constitutes the Kingmakers proved vain. She never agreed with the qualified gazzetted Abrewatia of the Sakyibea Gate to accept her provided candidate for the nomination. Rather, she maneuvered to liaise with some other Mmea-mpanyinfo in the Sakyibea Gate for a different candidate which the Queen mother had imposed and installed without any proper and customary nomination. Furthermore, the Queen mother did not comfortably meet with her advisory body to decide on the ‘’Ahenetoto’’ for the nomination.
After series of communication had been exchanged, the security agencies and the stakeholders requested that the processes of the nomination should be performed in accordance with the laid down customary procedures of the stool because of its system of Rotation. On this note the Queen mother scheduled a meeting to be held at the Asonohene’s house on Tuesday 5th December 2017 for the nomination.
Majority of we, the Kingmakers raised objection against the meeting to be held at the Asonahene’s house for being customary/traditionally improper and inappropriate. Therefore we requested that the meeting be held at the Queenmother’s house instead of the Asonahene’s house. The Queen mother did not accept our request but continued to act according to her wish.
However there were still circulating rumors that the Queen mother was intending and planning towards the installation of her candidate without any regard and respect to all the interventions made by the Kingmakers, the five Divisional Chiefs of Akuapem , the Security Council, and or any other group whatsoever.
On the said Tuesday, 5th December 2017, when we the undersigned Kingmakers were waiting for a change of the venue for the meeting for the performance of the customary nomination, we had information that the Queen mother is installing her candidate. We were at loss and astonished, because there was no nomination or election before the said was haphazardly performed, contrary to the norms, customs, traditions and usages of Akuapem.
Whilst we were still deciding and considering the uncustomary installation of the Queen other’s candidate, we had no other alternative than to customarily and statutorily accept the candidate presented to the majority of the kingmakers by the Abrewatia of the Sakyibea Gate also for installation.
These brought about the installation of two (2) candidates as Okuapehene; one candidate was nominated and installed by the Queen mother with three (3) of the Asona stool occupants. The candidate nominated by the Abrewatia of the Sakyibea Gate was presented to us, the undersigned seven (7) Asona stool occupants constituting the kingmakers (Asihene). After we have customarily accepted the candidature, we performed the required customary rites to install him and further sent him for confinement.
We the Asihene received nomination from the Abrewatia and having considered the family tree, the C. V, of the candidate and his background, we fully endorse him as the proper and fit candidate to ascend the great Ofori Kuma stool.
We considered further the customs, traditions, norms and usages of Akuapem as well as the rules, laws, line applicable to the okuapehene stool and the provisions of- The Institution of Chieftaincy in Ghana: the future, -the book authored by our beloved, great and departed paramount Chief Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa III, we deemed it customary and statutory fit and proper that the Abrewatia’s candidate should be upheld for outdooring and installation by Okuapemman as their next Paramount Chief.
We thank you for your attention.
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