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General News Wed, 28 Apr 1999

Chief prevented from paying homage as queenmother accosts him

Kumasi (Ashanti), 28th April ?99 ?

Krotwiamansa Agyei Ampofo, Goasohene and member of Council of State, was on Tuesday prevented from swearing the oath of allegiance to the new Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi, whe he clashed with his queenmother, Nana Kusi Boadum Acheampomaa.

The Amanhene and Abrempong (paramount chiefs) within and outside the Ashanti Region who owe allegiance to the Golden Stool were in the process of swearing the oath, when the queenmother prevented Krotwiamansa Ampofo from being part of it.

The Goasohene was about to swear the oath of allegiance to Otumfuo Osei Tutu, who was sitting in state at the Sumpiekesie (raised concrete platform), when Nana Acheampomaa threw herself on the ground in his path, which prevented him from swearing to the Asantehene.

The Queenmother again threw herself onto the ground before the Asantehene's linguists and swore the Great Oath of Asante (Ntamkesie) that Krotwiamansa Ampofo was not qualified to swear to the Asantehene.

A free-for-all fight then ensued between the supporters of the omanhene and the queenmother, and the police had to use tear gas to disperse those involved in the brawl.

When sanity was restored after about 20 minutes, Otumfuo Osei Tutu asked Nana Acheampomaa to explain her conduct, which is unprecedented in Asante tradition.

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The queenmother alleged that during the reign of late Asantehene, Otumfuo Opoku Ware II, Nana Ampofo Adjei on three different occasions was requested to appear before him over a dispute, but he refused to turn up on each occasion. This is regarded as a sign gross disrespect to the Golden Stool.

Nana Acheampomaa claimed that by his refusal, Krotwiamansa Ampofo was not qualified to swear the oath of allegiance to the new King.

Nana Ampofo who was shocked and could not contain the apparent disgrace, pounced on the queenmother.

Within a twinkle of an eye, supporters of the chief, on one hand and those of Nana Ampofowaa on the other, engaged in a free-for all fight which was only controlled when the police intervened.

All the other paramount chiefs, as well as divisional chiefs under the Golden Stool, swore the oath of allegiance without any further incident and ceremony passed smoothly without any more incidents.

Krotwiamansa Ampofo in a statement later claimed that the woman, who confronted him at the oath-swearing ceremony was not his queenmother, Nana Kusi Boadum Acheampomaa. Rather she was a destooled Obaapanin called Madam Yaa Mabre who calls herself Nana Yaa Akyaa.

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Nana Ampofo Adjei denied ever showing disrespect to Otumfuo Opoku Ware, adding "that his last visit to him was about a month before he died and Otumfuo Opoku Ware praised him for bringing honour to the Golden Stool".

Meanwhile, a statement issued by Odeneho Oduro Numapau, Essumajahene and Chairman of the Standing Committee of Ashanti Regional House of Chiefs, denied that the Goasohene assaulted his queenmother.

"I wish to inform you on behalf of Asanteman that although there was an incident, Nana Adjei Ampofo did not personally assault the said woman claiming to be his queenmother".

Otumfuo Osei Tutu this after noon sat in state to receive homage from people from all walks of life to bring his coronation to an end.

GRi?/

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