Court restrain Osu ‘Mantse’ from House of Chiefs’ election

Tue, 25 Oct 2016 Source: Julian Owusu Abedi

An Accra High Court has placed an injunction on Nii Okwei Kinka Dowuona VI preventing him from contesting for any executive chiefly position at the Greater Accra Regional House of Chiefs due to suits against him concerning his capacity as Osu Mantse.

The ‘Osu Mantse’ Nii Okwei Kinka Dowuona VI is currently being challenged both at the Supreme Court due to allegations of fraud in his acquisition of a Gazette and also at the Greater Accra Regional House of Chiefs over his legitimacy to rule as the Paramount Chief of Osu whilst the un-destooled and the substantive Chief Nii Nortey Owuo III is still alive.

A little background to the brouhaha currently surrounding the Osu Stool reveals that the Nii Kinka Dowuona VI is allegedly representing the ‘Black Stool’ he has not even seen before neither has he ever sat on it and that he is only claiming to be a Chief to the Osu stool without proper Traditional rites by the Osiahene of Osu.

On 29th December 1984, Mr. David Nortey Ashong was duly installed as the Osu Mantse under the stool name of Nii Nortey Owuo III in succession to the late Nii Nortei Owuo III (a.k.a Chief Jonathan) and became entitled to exercise statutory powers under section 48, Chieftaincy Act 1971.

However, on 15th August 1986, by a local government bulletin, the PNDC government published that it had withdrawn its recognition from Nii Nortey Owuo III and subsequently the Regional Administrative Officer circulated a letter stating that the Osu Mantse had been de-stooled by that Government’s bulletin. The Osu ‘Mankralo’ thought withdrawal of government recognition meant ‘de-stoolment’ 0f Nii Nortey Owuo III.

Thereupon, the Osu Mankralo Nii Ako Nortei IV claiming that the Osu Stool had thus become vacant, declared that he had become the acting Osu Mantse. But on that score with regards to his claim to be the acting Chief, both the Appeal Court and the Supreme Courts deflated his bubble when they both gave a resounding unanimous decisions of 3-0 and 5-0 against the ‘mankralo’.

Notwithstanding all these Court judgments, in 2007 the Mankralo went ahead to ignore the courts’ judgment and installed Michael Kwartelai Owoo as Nii Okwei Kinka Dowuona VI. This unlawful installation of NiiKinkaDowuona VI was ruled by an Accra High Court as an act of contempt and the Mankralo was sentenced accordingly.

It is however worthy of notice that a new Chief can only be installed when the sitting Chief passes on or a proper customary rite is performed to de-stool the chief to render the stool vacant.

People become Chiefs fundamentally because of customary nomination, selection and installation by kingmakers of that particular Stool in question as is enshrined in the 1992 Constitution.

The Supreme Court speaking with one voice on similar matter stated In Republic v National House of Chiefs; ex parte AkrofaKrukoko II (Enimil VI Interested Party [2007-2008] SCGLR 173, Sophia Adinyira JSC, reading the unanimous verdict of the court stated as follows:

“It is settled law that entries made or deleted from the National House of chiefs do not constitute adjudication or determination as to who is a chief or who is not, but rather a purely administrative act… However, it is our considered opinion that any name on the National Register of chiefsraisesa presumption that the bearer of that name on the said register holds the title of a chief or Queen mother of that particular traditional area to which the title relates or emanates.”

The Court will be sitting on the 27th of October, 2016 to decide on an interlocutory injunction application against Nii Kinka Dowuona VI. We shall keep you up-dated with developments.

Source: Julian Owusu Abedi

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