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08.10.2005 Regional News

Ofinsohene helps settle ten-year old Kwahu chieftaincy dispute

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Abetifi (E/R), Oct. 08, GNA - The Ofinsohene, Nana Wiafe Akenten III, on Thursday, facilitated the amicable settlement of the ten-year-old chieftaincy dispute between the Obohene, Nana Yeboah Afari Obuogyan and Kwahu Traditional Council (KTC) at a reconciliation ceremony at Abetifi.

Nana Obuogyan, who accepted his guilt for his unilateral secession of his Nifa Division from the Kwahu Traditional Council to form what he called "Aduanaman" paramountcy, apologized to the members of the Council.

As part of the settlement terms, the Council, which had earlier demanded a pacification package of 24 rams and 24 cartons of schnapps from Nana Obuagyan, later agreed to reduce it to 12 rams and six cartons of schnapps for the performance of the necessary customary rites. This followed a series of pleadings by the Benkyemhene, Nana Fosu Gyeabour-Akoto II and the Asokore-Mamponghene, Nana Boakye Ansah-Debrah, who were asked by the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu, to accompany Nana Wiafe Akenten to the settlement ceremony.

Nana Obuogyan promised to pay 100 million cedis to help defray some of the cost incurred by the KTC in the course of the litigations over the issue.

He also offered to give a befitting burial to the late Nana Kofi Boateng, who was installed as the Nifahene of the traditional area to replace him following his secession but died four years ago. Nana Akenten thanked the members of the Council, especially the Okwahumanhene, Daasebre Akuamoah Boateng, II, for accepting his mediation efforts and agreed to settle the dispute. He said if the traditional institutions could effectively use their facilities to help in bringing peace to the country, the chieftaincy institution had the potential of gaining its befitting recognition in the administration of the country.

Daasebre Akuamoah Boateng in his remarks, advised Nana Obuogyan to demonstrate goodwill towards the Traditional Council to prove that he had truly regretted his action and ensure that such a thing would never happen again in the traditional area.

He urged him to use his academic background in history to help project the true historical facts of the people of Kwahu to the youth and people outside the Kwahu area.

Daasebre Akuamoah Boateng thanked Nana Wiafe Akenteng, and his delegation and the head of the Kwahu Community in Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions, Nana Akwasi Abankwah, for their efforts in helping to find a peaceful solution to the dispute.

The facts of the case was that ten years ago, Nana Obuogyan and some chiefs under the Nifa Division of the Kwahu Traditional Area, unilaterally declared their secession from the KTC to form a separate paramountcy which they to called "Aduanaman" paramountcy. The Okwahuhene, Daasebre Akuamuah Boateng, consequently filed a suit at the Judicial Committee of the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs for a ruling to nullify the action of the Obohene and to enable the KTC to take possession of the Obo palace and stool regalia in the possession of Nana Obuogyan.

But before the Committee could hear the case, Nana Obuogyan filed and obtained a certiorari from a Koforidua High Court to prevent the hearing.

The House and the Okwahuhene appealed against the ruling and the Court of Appeal upheld appeal and directed Nana Obuagyan to enter appearance before the Judicial Committee.

However, he again took the case to the Supreme Court for a ruling which also upheld the position of the Appeal Court. In August, this year, following an appeal made to him by Nana Obuagyan, the Ofinsohene appealed to the Judicial Committee to permit to withdraw the case for amicable settlement.

The KTC and the Judicial Committee granted the request of Nana Wiafe Akenteng with the Committee directing that the Ofinsohene and the parties should report back to it by October 31, this year, on the outcome of the settlement effort.