New Twist In Okuapehene Enstoolment
The Eastern Regional House of Chiefs on Thursday held that the enstoolment of Odehye Kwasi Akuffo as successor to the late Okuapehene Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa III was done without following due traditional process.
Odehye Kwasi Akuffo, a journalist, was enstooled by the Paramount Queenmother, Nana Afua Nketia Obuo, as the new Paramount Chief of Okuapeman last year.
Delivering the judgement in Koforidua, the Regional House of Chiefs Judicial Committee upheld that selection of an eligible royal to be enstooled as paramount chief is the prerogative of the Abrewatia of the ruling family, whose turn it is to select a candidate and submit the name of the chosen royal to Asonahene to be sent to the Queenmother.
According to the Regional House of Chiefs, the Queenmother could not demonstrate clearly that Odehye Kwasi Akuffo's name was presented to the Asonahene as tradition demands.
The house also stated that in nominating a candidate, the Queenmother alone cannot select a candidate from the Royal Family without the involvement of the Abrewatia.
They then said the instalment of Odehye Kwasi Akuffo was not done on the agreement of all the parties involved in the matter.
The Regional House of Chiefs also awarded GH¢25,000 cost against the Queenmother.
Already, there is uneasy calm at Akropong as the factions that are claiming 'victory' in the matter are said to be planning to enstool a new Okuapehene.
The Okuapeman stool is said to have three ruling houses, namely Nketia, Amogyaa and Sakyeabea and, currently, the Sakyibea ruling house is said to be the group supposed to select a candidate to be installed as Okuapehene following the demise of the occupant.
The Stool has remained vacant for about five years after the death of Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwah III, because of the disagreement over who should be the next Okuapehene.
Since then, two factions have emerged from the Sakyebea royal family, and each is claiming to be the rightful gate to select the next Okuapehene.
While the Okuapehemaa, Nana Afua Nketiaa Obuo, selected Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo, a retired journalist and presented him in the palace of Nana Kwasi Omenako II, who is the head of the Akuapem Asona royal family (Asonahene) for the process to commence as the new Okuapehene, with the stool name Nana OboubiAtiemo, the Abrewatia called Lilian Nana Agyemang also nominated one Nana Kese as the rightful occupant of the stool.
The Okuapehemaa faction later presented Nana Kwasi Omenako II as the Okuapehene, but the Abrewatia petitioned the Regional House Chiefs challenging the capacity of the Okuapehemaa in selecting and installing Odehye Kwasi Akuffo as Okuapehene.
The judicial committee which was chaired by Okotwasuo Kantamanto Amanto Oworae Agyekum III, with Nene Sakite II and Daasebre Akuamoah Agyapong II as members, ruled that Odehye Kwasi Akuffo and Nana Kese must not hold themselves as Okuapehene, and also carry out activities during the Odwira Festival.