The Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II has bemoaned the bellicosity with which some traditional leaders in Kumasi are forcefully snatching lands from its owners over expired lease with impunity.
Addressing the Kumasi Traditional Council (KTC) at a meeting in Manhyia Palace, Kumasi, Otumfuo warned Kumasi traditional leaders to stop cheating Kumasi residents with their authority.
“I’m being accused wrongly for your unlawful activities in the region. You people are disgracing me, you all need to be careful with the things you are doing,” he warned.
The Asante monarch issued this warning in Manhyia Palace on Thursday 23rd February 2023 when he restored a land a couple acquired in 1942 and forceful seized from them by Amakomhene Nana Adu Mensah Asare and sold to the Church of Pentecost for a Church project over an expired lease.
The angry Asantehene who spoke through his linguist Baffour Kentenkrankyi condemned Amakomhene and his sub-Chief Abontenghene and warned his Abontenghene who has been challenging his authority on land issues to be careful else he will be summoned to the palace to come and explain his authority over lands issue in their traditional area.
“When you ascended to the Amakom stool the old woman was living on the land since 1942 so even if the lease has expired there is a clear law for lease renewal. There was Amakomhene before you. So you are the only wise person to eject the old woman. Don’t you feel worried for this old woman you treated this way. What money are you looking for and disregarding traditional rules on lease management? ’’ Otumfuo questioned.
He added “This old woman was going to die in tears if this issue had not come to my attention and my name will not depart from her tears because Amakomhene is my ‘Obrempong’ therefore, directly my name will be attached to the illegality. You have land because I allow you to swear the Asante oath before me. That’s why you are engaging in illegalities right ? ’’.
Otumfuo further explained “There are clear legal and traditional arrangements for restoring expired leases; you don’t just eject people from their property immediately you hear their lease has expired. You divide the said land into three, one is given to Asantehene, the woman takes one and Amakom stool also takes one. Why must you forcefully take all…. where from the intimidation? I have not given any land to your ‘Abontensohene’ so I will not take any explanation on that because I don’t know him nor have I created any stool for him. Where from this nonsense? Asantehene fumed.”
Otumfuo Further directed his anger to Nana Apagyahene, Nana Owusu Afriyie IV whom he describe as “Pagyaso moamoaso” if you cannot do the land’s job just tell me. Why must issue come to me for redress while you are there? That is your job no chief can claim any land or property from its owner when the lease expires because there are clear rules on that. The woman came to you and you said Nana Amakomhene has said no to the formal arrangement and you also didn’t tell me so what are you there for? You are doing your own thing. Amakomhene is also doing his own thing. Who should I trust now? ”
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Addressing the traditional leaders on lease issues, Otumfuo disclosed he is losing trust among the traditional leaders in Kumasi over how they are managing affairs without his direct involvement.
“You are making me lose my trust among you all. I have been talking about lease issues for the past 24 years but you don’t listen. Your illegal activities are a disgrace to respected Chieftaincy and me as the Asantehene’’.
Otumfuo in his final ruling directed Nana Apagyahene to send surveyors to the land and divide the said land into three one should be given to Amakomhene Nana Adu Mensah Asare, the remaining two including his(Asantehene) share should be given back to the woman for peace to prevail.