Eastern Regional House of Chiefs rejects Okuapehene

The long dispute over a successor to the late paramount chief – Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa III – reaches resolution

The Eastern Regional House of Chiefs has rebuffed Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo as the new Okuapehene or supreme chief of the Akuapem Traditional Area.

The Okuapehene, who was enstooled in 2019, was divested of all his traditional powers and given a restraining order to stop carrying himself as the paramount chief of Okuapeman.

According to news reports, there was a heavy military and police presence at the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs on Thursday as its judicial panel gave judgment on the Akuapem paramount stool.

Old Lady has exclusive rights

Delivering judgment, the Regional House of Chiefs ruled that the petitioner, Lily Agyemang – the Abrewatia (or king-making “Old Lady”) of the Sakyibea royal house – has sole right to select the paramount chief.

Thus the enstoolment of Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo as Okuapehene was invalid, the panel said.

The House also ruled that the selection of the person qualified to be enstooled as paramount chief was the exclusive right of the Abrewatia of the royal family.

The enthronement of Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo is therefore null and void, the House found, and has no traditional effect.

The Eastern Regional House of Chiefs accordingly awarded GHC25,000 in costs against the paramount queen mother, Nana Afua Nketiaa Obuo, who installed the now destooled chief.


Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo was enstooled in 2019 by Nana Afua Nketiaa Obuo as the successor to the late Okuapehene Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa III. It is this process that the judicial panel of the Regional House of Chiefs found to be without due traditional process.

The Okuapeman stool is occupied by three royal families: Nketia, Amogyaa and Sakyibea. It is now the turn of the Sakyibea royal family to select a candidate to be installed as Okuapehene.

The Okuapehene Stool has remained vacant almost five years, following the death of Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa III, Okuapemanhene. The delay in naming a successor to the old chief is the product of an impasse in the Sakyibea royal family, whose turn it is to nominate an heir to the throne.

Two factions emerged in the Sakyibea royal family, each claiming to have the right candidate to succeed Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa III, who ruled for 41 years.

The paramount queen mother selected Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo, a retired journalist and businessman, and installed him as Okuapehene. Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo was subsequently given the stool name Nana Oboubi Atiemo.

However, the Abrewatia of Sakyibea royal family nominated a young man, Nana Kwadwo Kese, to serve as paramount chief.

The disagreement led to a great deal of tension and the destruction of property in Akropong.

Lily Nana Agyemang, who is the Abrewatia of the Sakyibea royal family, petitioned the Regional House of Chiefs, challenging the capacity of the paramount queen mother to select and install Odehyie Kwasi Akuffo as the Okuapehene.

There is no gainsaying that the enstoolment of any new paramount chief, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, is a very difficult task. Indeed, it is a task that may require the strength of a Hercules.

Eugene Selorm Owusu

* Asaase Radio 99.5 FM. Coming to a dial near you.

* Twitter: @Asaase995FM

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