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09.03.2005 General News

Omanhene debunks allegations against him

By GNA

Nkoranza (B/A), March 09, GNA - Okatakyie Agyeman Kudom 1V, Omanhene of Nkoranza Traditional Area, has dismissed allegations of impropriety levelled against him by the Ankobeahene of the area and has challenged the sub-chief to substantiate them.

"They are a pack of lies calculated to tarnish my name and my image because as the Omanhene, I do not meddle in the disbursement of funds accruing to the traditional council nor am I one of the council's signatories at the bank", he said.

Briefing newsmen at his palace, the Omanhene explained that the council's three bank signatories are the Adontenhene, Akwamuhene and the Sanaahene and that the council has not found any of them involved in any scandalous acts.

Okatakyie Agyeman Kudom said the traditional council had never generated such a colossal sum, explaining that individual stools received their cheques through the council after payment vouchers had been opened for them.

"The Omanhene has nothing to do with the cheques that are not open", he said, adding it was impossible for him to tamper with such cheques.

Okatakyie Agyeman Kudom stated that personal properties he had acquired with his wife were through "our own sweat and efforts".

"I hold three British retirement benefits after my sojourn in that country, namely the National Health Service, London Borough of Lambeth, Brixton and the British Old Age Pension Scheme, so if I am doing anything in my personal capacity I have these sources of funds".

"The house at Pinihe belongs to me and I built it out of my own income and I challenge the Ankobeahene to disprove my claim. My wife is a trained teacher and a highly industrious woman so with our combined efforts we have put up three houses."

He said no audit had shown that the council had ever generated 3.9 billion cedis as the Ankobeahene claimed nor has the council ever seen this figure and there had never been any adverse audit report against the council.

On the allegation that he re-sold for 2.5 million cedis a private Mazda saloon car he bought at 100,000 cedis, the Omanhene said all the chiefs had agreed to his request to buy the car at 500,000 cedis. He said he initially made an advance payment of 200,000 cedis but when he later paid the 300,000 cedis balance to the Ankobeahene, the latter made use of the money.

Okatakyie Agyeman Kudom said he had had to remove the Ankobeahene as chairman of the council's finance committee because between 10-15 years he misappropriated stool land collections paid by charcoal burners and tenant farmers.

He said the Ankobeahene, Nana Adu Kwabena, Mr. G.O Boateng and Adu Donyina, who were members of the presidential commission whilst he was away in Britain, must be made to account for their stewardship. A cross section of the people talked to revered the Omanhene as a very progressive leader who had "changed the face of Nkoranzaman with very laudable innovations".

"Nana still enjoys the support and goodwill of the people just as the time he ascended the throne and he has been very supportive of especially the youth and the elderly", Maame Akua Kyaa, an octogenarian elder stateswoman said.

Oheneba Worae Kodom, Ankobeahene and some divisional chiefs of the traditional area at a recent press conference in Techiman accused the paramount chief of impropriety among other allegations and called on him to render satisfactory accounts of his 18-year stewardship to the people.

They urged the Omanhene, who is the President of the 49-member Brong Ahafo Regional House of Chiefs, to abdicate in his own interest to avoid any nasty incident. 09 March 05

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