Supreme Court declares late Naa Dasana Andani as rightful chief of Bimbilla

BY: Emmanuel Ebo Hawkson
There was a spontaneous jubilation outside the courtroom by the faction that won the case. PICTURES BY EMMANUEL EBO HAWKSON
There was a spontaneous jubilation outside the courtroom by the faction that won the case. PICTURES BY EMMANUEL EBO HAWKSON

The Supreme Court has declared the late Paramount Chief of the Nanumba Traditional Area, (Bimbilla), Naa Dasana Andani, as the rightful chief of the area.

Wednesday’s decision brings clarity to the protracted Bimbila chieftaincy crisis that had led to the death of many people including Naa Andani in 2014.

The five-member panel of the apex court reaffirmed the decisions of the Northern Regional House of Chiefs and the National House of Chiefs that declared Naa Andani as the legitimate chief of the area.

Another claimant to the Bimbilla skin, the late Nakpa Naa Salifu Dawuni, filed the appeal at the Supreme Court challenging the decision of the National House of Chiefs.

But in a unanimous decision on Wednesday May 23, 2018, the Supreme Court held that Naa Andani's lineage to the Bimbilla Skin was legitimate.

“We therefore find no merit in the appeal and it is dismissed in its entirety,” the court held.


The judgement was read by Mr Justice Gabriel Pwamang, while the panel was presided over by Mr Justice Julius Ansah.

Other members of the panel were Mr Justice Anin Yeboah, Mr Justice Paul Baffoe-Bonnie and Mr Justice Yaw Appau.

The court, however, refused to award cost as demanded by lawyers of the victors.

According to the court, the judgement would benefit the whole Nanumba community, and also the two opposing factions were members of the same family.

Background

The Nanumba Traditional Council has two main Gates; Bang-yili and Gbugma-yili whose representatives rotate their occupancy of the throne.

The protracted chieftaincy dispute in the area became more pronounced in 2003, after the demise of the former Paramount Chief for Nanung, Na Abarika, who belonged to the Bang-yili gate.

A conflict ensued as to who was qualified from the Gbugma-yili gate tosucceed him. While the late Naa Salifu Dawuni indicated that he was the rightful successor, Naa Andani also claimed he was the one chosen to occupy the throne. This compelled the Judicial Committee of the Northern Regional House of Chiefs to investigate the matter.

The three-member committee chaired by Yunyoo Rana Yamyia Tooka II, in March 2012, unanimously declared Na Andani Dasana as the substantive Paramount Chief for the Bimbilla Traditional Area.

The verdict, however, did not go down well with the late Naa Dawuni and his faction, leading to their appeal at the National House of Chiefs.

The National House of Chiefs dismissed the appeal.

Not happy with the National House of Chiefs decision, Naa Dawuni faction marched to the Supreme Court.