General News of 2012-10-12

Asantehene faces destoolment

The Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II faces a possibility of being destooled, if he returns to Ghana from Norway without the missing ancestral jewels, a sociologist Nana Obiri Yeboah claims.

Precious crown jewels inherited by Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II were on Thursday stolen from the lobby of a hotel in Oslo, Norway where he and his entourage have been staying as they attend the Norwegian-African Business Summit.

Norwegian media that have been following the case confirmed to Joy News’ Evans Mensah that the police there are treating the incident with the seriousness it deserves.

Nana Obiri Yeboah, an expert in traditional and chieftaincy affairs, described the missing items as an ancestry legacy that must be “guarded jealously by everybody” whose care they have been entrusted.

He told Joy News that due to the historical significance attached to the jewels, anybody who is in possession must account to the people of Ashanti yearly, but one is sure of getting punished for any “shortage”.

“It can lead to destoolment. Serious sanctions; there is an accountability at a certain period, [during one of the festivals] he must account for it…there is accountability and probity, so if you can’t account for it then there would be sanctions.”

Asked if the current Asantehene himself may be subjected to the same punitive measure, Nana Obiri Yeboah responded in affirmative.

“Yes. It is not your personal property, I don’t think those gold are his personal property, they belong to the kingdom and the family. I am worried or I am at a lost how it was in a bag and they took it to [Norway] I am at a lost. These things are kept with someone responsible.”

In instances where one is not even destooled, Nana Obiri Yeboah maintained that the ancestors may visit the person who misplaced them with some catastrophic consequences.

“It should not be stolen, it is a family property and if it is sold or stolen, the fear is that the ancestors will revisit you with diseases and calamities. It has haunted so many families which have dissipated these legacies that is why it is a worry to many Ashantis and other people.”