PARAMOUNT Chief of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area, Odeneho Akrofa Krukoko II, has called on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to intervene by way of impressing upon the elders in his chiefdom to accord him the necessary respect and also recognise his chieftaincy status as the legitimate paramount chief of the area.
Wassa Fiase Traditional Area is a gold mining and cocoa growing community in the Tarkwa Nsuaem District of the Western Region
“I am pleading with the President to, as a matter of urgency, to restore my chieftaincy status recognition because l don’t want violence.
” I want to draw your attention that the claims in a suit at the Western Regional House of Chiefs (WRHCs) by the elders of the area in the persons of Nana Kwadu Kyerefo II, Nana Kobina Angu II, Nana Kwandoh Brempong, Nana Kwaw Amoah II, Nana Kwabena Gyan II, and Nana Ampong Kwasi II that he (Odeneho Akrofa Krukoko II) has been slapped with a 14-day jail term over a contempt case and that in their customs and traditions a chief who has been jailed before cannot ascend the throne, the Appeal Court in Sekondi-Takoradi, presided over by Justice J. A. Osei, Justice P.K. Twumasi and R.T. Aninakwae, in a unanimous decision, declared judgement in favour of me (Odeneho Akrofa Krukoko II) after it quashed the earlier default judgment by WRHCs Judicial Committee against me.
“The Black Stool of the Wassa Fiase Traditional Area is in my position, so l do not fall short of claiming my position as the traditional and legally installed King of Fiase Traditional Area,” Krukoko noted this in a petition to President Akufo-Addo.
The five-page petition, dated February 6, 2019 and copied to the Minister of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, Inspector General of Police (IGP), Western Regional House of Chief, and the Western Regional Minister, was entitled ‘Truncation of my tenure as Omanhene of Wassa Fiase and President of Wassae Fiase Traditional Council’.
The petition reads in part that “contrary to and in manifest violation of the Chieftaincy Act (Act 759) in consummation of the Chieftaincy institution, together with its traditional council as established by customary law and usages as guaranteed in chapter 22 of the 1992 constitution of the fourth Republic, an incompetent purported destoolment was brought against him.”
It continued that pursuant to the Chieftaincy Act as mentioned above, my purported destoolment was illegally procured in violation of both customary law and procedure.
The petition noted that “All throughout this deliberate humiliation, l have sought through both judicial and customary and traditional processes to enforce my legitimacy. And, in all of these, l have been exonerated by the Court of Appeal and WRHCs.
It indicated that the Ministry of Chieftaincy and Regional Affairs, at the Western Regional level had been central at the arbitration and resolution of this illegal and procedural circumvention and were privy to matters of the parties of the parties thereupon.
“It has glaringly become apparent at the adjudications thereby, that Osagyefo Kwamina Enimi VI cannot continue to illegally occupy a throne he has no entitlement to,” the petition said, adding that his illegal and continued occupation of the black throne amounts to a slap on the face of the abiding principles of not only the 1992 of Ghana, but particularly the Chieftaincy Act.
In the circumstances, the petition stressed the need for the Minister of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs to use his office to commence the rightful processes to restore and bring meaning to the act of chieftaincy law by reinstating him as the President and chief of the area.
This way, the petition noted that the anger of his people would have been assauged.
It would be recalled the Judicial Committee of the Western Regional of Chiefs had declared a judgment to reinstate the chieftaincy status of Odeneho Krukoko, who was destooled by some self-seeking elders of the area some 19 years ago.
The WRHC’s Judicial Committee declared a default judgment against Odeneho Krukoko without looking at the required customary and legal procedures of the destoolment and enstoolment.
Today, however, Odeneho Krukoko has appealed against the default judgement by WRHC at the Court of Appeal in Sekondi-Takoradi.
But the Appeal Court, presided over by Justice J.A. Osei, Justice P.K. Twumasi and R.T. Aninakwae, in a unanimous decision declared judgement in favour of Odeneho Krukoko after it quashed the earlier default judgment by WRHC’s Judicial Committee against Odeneho Akrofa Krukoko.
According to the Court of Appeal, the default judgment against Odeneho Krukoko was declared null and void after the court found no merit in the decision of those elders to destool Odeneho Krukoko without justifiable reasons.
Looking at the provisions in the old and new Chieftaincy Act, the Court of Appeal said it had realised that the destoolment of Odeneho Akrofa Krukoko II did not follow traditional due processes because the elders did not support their statement of claim with an action of destoolment charge.
Following this latest development, the Judicial Committee of the Western Regional House of Chiefs, in another ruling dated December 4, 2018, struck out the petition filed by the same elders on November 11, 2015 supporting the purported destoolment of Odeneho Krukoko, who doubles as the President of Wassa Fiase Traditional Council.