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Opinions of Monday, 18 June 2018

Columnist: Kelvin Yeboah

Re: I cherish my relationship with Asantehene - Okyehene

Finally,It is crystal clear that the Omanhene of Akyem Abuakwa sees himself as the co-equal of the Ashanti Monarch.

Indeed his utterances at the just held Head of State dinner at Manhyia shows it all and has confirmed the long held view by many that the Omanhene of Akyem Abuakwa carries himself as though he is another monarch for another kingdom in Ghana.

But this is where we need to state the facts and also remind people to accept their respective status in society as we all cannot be equal.

It is also to make the Omanhene of Akyem Abuakwa aware of the fact that he is and will forever remain the paramount chief of Akyem Abuakwa and not all the Akyems let alone thinking of the eastern region.

First of all,it must be stated that there are three different gates within the akyem state namely Abuakwa,Kotoku and Bosome all of which have their paramount chiefs.And so there is no title and individual as OKYEHENE in the books of the house of chiefs and in the chieftancy Act.

It must also be noted that population of Akyem Abuakwa is just about 168,000 which is 6.4 percent of the eastern region population.Also,the Akyems just like the Kwahus and Bonos, are all asantes from Adansi who decided to break away.

Akyem Abuakwa is a paramouncy just like Nkoranza in the Brong Ahafo Region,Worawora in the volta region,Bogu in the Ashanti Region and New Juaben in the Eastern Region which are all under the Asantehene.

So what will make the Amoatia Ofori Panin,a Paramount chief of a smaller area ever think that he has everything in common with the asantehene?

And so one taught that upon having such a platform,Osagyefo Amoatia will have used it to dispel the perception of animosity, arrogance and the fact that he is competing with his boss,Asantehene.But rather he spoke as though he was another monarch from another country who was talking to his co-equal.

But as a former registrar of the eastern regional house of chiefs once said, Akyem Abuakwa can never be equal to Asante and should never be compared.It should rather be compared to the smaller paramouncies and not Asante as a Kingdom.There is nothing like Akyem Abuakwa Kingdom.

Can he ever compare himself to the king of Morroco,Swaziland or the Zulu king? It's is a big no.What therefore makes him think he is equal to the asantehene.

The Asantehene is the head of all Akans across West Africa and around the globe. He presides over a huge kingdom with several millions of subjects with enormous powers and responsibilities economically,politicaly,spiritually,culturally and diplomatically.He presides over a nation that is in union with another nation.

The fact that Osagyefo Amoatia was enthroned in the same year as the Asante monarch does not make you equal.

So Amoatia Ofori Panin should know that he is never equal to the Asantehene and has nothing in common.
Periods of enthronement,age and arrival dates are never a feature of commonalities.They are sheer coindence and never amounts to equality.

The Omanhene of Akyem Abuakwa should rather be comparing himself to other paramount chiefs like Juaben, Bogu,Asogli,Dormaa,Cape Coast, Asokore and not the asante monarch.

He is aware of the fact that he does not represent the entire akyem people and also aware of the perception of animosity, arrogance and the fact that he carries himself as the paramount chief of all Akyems,that has attracted negative publicity for him.What did he say about that? What will happen if the other two Akyem paramount chiefs also decide to call themselves OKYEHENE?Did he also apologise and condem the uncouth behaviour of his boys towards Otumfor's representative during the funeral of Hon.J.B.Danquah.He could have used the huge platform offered him last weekend to debunk all these perception,apologise for the bad behaviour of his boys and also confirm how he was ready to serve and respect Asanteman and the Ashanti Monarch.

As it is done traditionally in Ghana,any anybody who goes before Asantehene goes with his cloth lowered on his hands and barechested,he went there in full cloth and to stand toe to toe as though they are co-equals.A mark that shows how big he feels to humble and to respect the asante monarch.

Much as we respect all our paramount and sub chiefs,we also expect the paramount and sub chiefs to give unfettered respect and courtesies to their boss,Otumfor.It's only when Amoatia Ofori Panin begins to show respect,humility and show that he is under the ashanti king and that his influence is only in parts of Akyem Abuakwa, that people will also accord him respect and stop all the negative publicities against him.

It is even more sad that it took the president,a native of Kyebi, to intervene before Osagyefo could go to Manhyia.It only confirms the long held view that Osagyefo was waiting for Nana Addo to become President so he could be promoted over and above other paramount chiefs.How many other chiefs were invited from other regions and why was Osagyefo the only paramount chief given the platform to speak?Why can't Osagyefo go to kumasi alone when his colleague paramount chiefs from Kotoku and Bosome are always at Manhyia to partake in all functions.

It is time for us as a people and the Omanhene of Akyem Abuakwa in particular to accept our respective status in society as who we are and subject ourselves to higher authority.We cannot have every paramount chief in every corner of the country assuming to be a king.

We are sometimes deceived into believing that we are all equal.But the fact is that we are all not equal.In every society there are those who will always lead and those who will follow.In the UK and US, there are those who lead and those who follow.It does not make the followers less human.

Until the merger of the asanteman council and the gold coast legislative council to form what we call Ghana today,there was the asante kingdom as a nation with one monarch and all the paramount chiefs under his authority.

However with democracy,every chief gets up and start calling himself king and start allocating all sort of titles and courtesies to himself.
It is time that people are put are their right places.The Omanhene of Akyem Abuakwa is very wrong and should never deceive himself that he is equal to Opemsoo.

It is increasingly becoming annoying for a small area like Akyem Abuakwa to always be comparing themselves to Asante Kingdom.

Afterall,the servant can never be equal to his master.