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Akuapem Gyase marks Odwira: Calls for settlement of paramountcy dispute

BY: Haruna Yussif Wunpini
Oseadeeyo Kwasi Akuffo III (2nd from left), the Okuapehene, arriving at the durbar ground
Oseadeeyo Kwasi Akuffo III (2nd from left), the Okuapehene, arriving at the durbar ground

The Gyasehene of the Akuapem Traditional Area, Nana Osim Kwatia II, has appealed to the chiefs and people of Akuapem to find a lasting solution to the chieftaincy dispute that has plagued Okuapeman.

There has been a dispute over who should succeed the late Okuapehene, Oseadeeyo Addo Dankwa II, who passed in August 2015, after ruling for 35 years.

Nana Kwatia, who is also the Chief of Amanokrom, made the appeal at a durbar of chiefs and people of the Gyase Division to mark this year's Odwira festival at Amanokrom last Saturday.

The Odwira festival is celebrated annually by the chiefs and people of the Gyase Division, during which the indigenes, both home and abroad, converge in the town to plan development projects as well as settle family disputes.

The event with the theme: "Gyaseman: a model for progress, prosperity and development", coincided with the 15th anniversary of the enstoolment of Nana Kwatia as Amanokromhene.

New title

Nana Kwatia, who has just been bestowed with the title Okofrobour, said it was worrying that for over 15 years, Akuapems had not enjoyed peace to realise their full potentials to develop the area.

According to him, since no development plan to build Akuapem could be realised without peace and harmony, it was imperative to find a lasting solution to the issue and unite aggrieved factions.

"No matter the laudable intention and urgency with which we seek to progress, we must accept that no development plan can attain its objectives without peace and harmony within Okuapeman.”

"This is worrying to all well-meaning people of Akuapem. So, I appeal to all aggrieved parties to temper their excesses as we seek peace and stability to grow," Okofrobour Kwatia told the gathering.

He said as the Gyasehene of Akuapem, he would be playing his role in reference to the Koforidua Accord.

Koforidua Accord

The Koforidua Accord spelt out the framework for finding a lasting solution to the Akuapem paramountcy disputes.

That, Okofrobour Kwatia indicated, would unite all the Akuapem divisions, which broke apart, and work in unison to bring back the lost glory of Akuapem.

Touching on the economic activities of the people of Amanokrom, he said the recent investment in green organic farming by Maroun Housing Company Limited at Amanokrom attested to the enormous potentials that existed in the area.

That, Okofrobour Kwatia said, would provide employment for the teeming youth.

Regarding development projects in the area, the Amanokrom Chief stated that the Amanokrom community centre, the schools and the Presbyterian Church buildings were being maintained, while other projects were ongoing as planned.

Unity

The Eastern Regional Minister, Seth Kwame Acheampong, who represented the Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, said since it was only unity that developed societies, chiefs who protect lands, tradition and chieftaincy must unite to safeguard such institutions.

He said it was in such direction that the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, had been dwelling on peace and unity within paramountcies in the country, including that of Okuapeman.

Okofrobour Osim Kwatia, the Gyasehene of the Akuapem Traditioal Area, welcoming Seth Kwame Acheampong, the Eastern Regional Minister, to the durbar ground

Mr Acheampong, on behalf of the President and the Vice, appealed to the kingmakers of Akuapem to work towards the resolution of the chieftaincy dispute, to pave way for a number of development projects and programmes to improve the living conditions of the people in the area.

Present at the ceremony were the Okuapehene, Oseadeeyo Kwasi Akuffo III; Member of Parliament (MP) for Akuapem North, Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah Adjei; the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Akuapem North, Barima Awuah Sarpong Asiedu Larbi; a number of chiefs and queens of Akuapem, the Apagyahene of New Juaben, Nana Kwane Dua and leaders of religious bodies.

A number of organisations and people who contributed towards the development of the Gyase Division were awarded and presented with citations.

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