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Two members of the Aduana Royal families have registered their opposition to the acceptance of Dr. Yaw Sarfo by the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, and the Asanteman Council as the Kumawuhene-elect for subsequent installation.

Abusuapanin Kwaku Gyekyei, alias “Wanonwi”, of the Odumasi Aduana Royal family and Opanin Kwabena Kodua, Principal Member of the Anananya Aduana Royal family of Kumawu have since, February this year, gone to court for an order to quash the decision of Otumfuo and the Asanteman Council to uphold Dr. Sarfo as the Kumawuhene-elect.

The suit, filed before a Kumasi High Court (Human Rights Division), also challenged any further adjudicating on any matter affecting the Kumawu Paramount Stool, pending the hearing and final determination of the motion filed on behalf of the applicants by Lawyer Charles Agbanu of Yaanom Chambers in Kumasi.

The applicants claim that they, as heads of two ruling royal families out of three, were not involved in the selection of the candidate for enstoolment as Kumawuhene. At a meeting of the Asantemana Council on February 24, 2014, with Otumfuo Osei Tutu II presiding, directed that Dr. Yaw Sarfo, who had been duly nominated by the Queenmother of Kumawu, be accepted by the kingmakers for introduction and subsequent enstoolment.

The directive came after it became evident that the kingmakers had, in principle, accepted Dr. Yaw Sarfo’s candidature earlier. In the dock, are Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, the Asantehene, and President of the Asanteman Council, represented by Nana Poku Nsuase Agyeman III, Otumfuo’s Akyeamehene, as first respondent; the Asanteman Council, represented by the Bantamahene, Baffuor Asare Owusu Amankwaa; Nana Serwaa Amponsah, Kumawuhemaa, and Nana Peprah Kodua II, Krontihene of Kumawu, as the second, third and fourth respondents respectively.

The rest of the respondents are Nana Akwasi Baffoe, Akwamuhene of Kumawu; Baffuor Atta Tweneboah, Nifahene of Kumawu, and Dr. Yaw Sarfo, Kumawuhene-elect as the fifth, sixth and seventh respondents. Lawyer Paapa Dadson is representing Otumfuo and the Asanteman Council, while Lawyer Kwabena Atta Adjei represents the Kumawu queen and Kumawuhene-elect, with Lawyer Obeng Manu Jnr providing legal services to the rest of the respondents.

In a 17-point affidavit in support of the notice of the motion for an application for a judicial review, the applicants said the acceptance and oral order to introduce Dr. Sarfo to the kingmakers for subsequent enstoolment as Kumawuhene was unlawful and against the principles of natural justice. The applicants said they were compelled to apply for an order of prohibition to restrain the respondents from further proceeding on any Kumawu stool affairs, and block the unlawful order by the first and second respondents until the final determination by the court, in order to prevent a fait accompli.

Last Friday, the Human Rights Division of a Kumasi High Court, presided over by His Lordship Mr. Justice Paul Richardson, granted a motion for extension of time of the hearing of the suit, at the instance of Counsel Agbanu. Counsel for the respondents did not object to the application for an extension of time. The counsel indicated that because of the importance of the application, it was necessary that the rights of the applicants were protected, and prayed the court to grant the application, to enable them (applicants) seek the services of Lawyer Adumoa-Bossman.

Lawyer Agbanu explained that in spite of 49 years of practice as a legal practitioner, he was not well versed in the Kumawu Stool Affairs, and that the factual knowledge of Mr. Adumoa-Bossman, as solicitor for the late Kumawuhene, was required, and therefore, prayed the court to grant an extension to rope the veteran lawyer in the case. The court has adjourned to June 26, 2014 for hearing of the case after it awarded cost of GH¢800 for each of the seven respondents. The court will, however, sit on June 10, 2014, to ensure that the required processes are duly filed, before hearing commences on July 26.
Source: Chronicle

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