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Regional News of Wednesday, 8 January 2003

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Nkawkawhene Pushes for Peace

THE NKAWKAWHENE, Nana Yaw Frempong, one of the contending parties in the chieftaincy dispute at Nkawkaw, has advised the Ayokuo Family, who are the customary children of the Royal Aduana Clan which Nana Frempong belongs, to join hands with their fathers and push the development of Nkawkaw forward since there would be no development in a divided front.

The chief made the statement after the ruling by the Nkawkaw High Court which sat on the case between the Obomenghene, Nana Obeng Akrofi, and Nana Asante Ampadu, the Nkawkaw Adehyiehene and others which lasted over four years.

Brief facts of the case at the court were that after the death of former Nkawkawhene, Nana Aninakwa Bonsu Nyame, the customary son of Obomenghene,the Obomenghen and the Aduana family of Obomeng invited the Ayokuo family to meet and prepare for ther funeral of the late chief but the Ayokuo family allegedly refused to comply and went ahead to bury the late chief at the Nkawkaw Chief palace and further organised the funeral with the participation of their fathers, the Aduana family

The Obomenghene, not satisfied with their action and alleged gross disrespect to him and the Aduana royal family, instituted a writ at the Nkawkaw High Court in 1997 praying the court to order the exhumation of the body of the late chief from the chief palace, to recover the property (the chief palace) to Obomenghene and other claims.

After several arguments and evidence from both parties, the court ruled in favour of the Obomenghene and the Aduana clan as the main custodians of the Nkawkaw stool and actual owners of the Nkawkaw chief palace since the Ayokuo clain were just caretakers.

The court further ordered the exhumation of the body from the chief palace and ordered the Ayokuo family to pay a cost of ?18 million. It was upon this state of affairs when the Nkawkawhene offered an olive branch to the Ayokuo clan, urging them to accept the court's verdict and join their fathers to develop Nkawkaw, which is the gateway to Kwahu.

He said he was prepared to offer them a respectable seat in his administration to steer the affairs of Nkawkaw for rapid development.

He further promised to co-operate and accept them as his children as has been the practice over the years.

"What we need now is peace, since without it, there could be no development," he emphasized.

Meanwhile, the Ayokuo family has filed notice of appeal at the Appeal's Court already, challenging the High Court's ruling and order.