Okyenhene Not My Rival -Otumfuo

Otumfuo Osei Tutu with Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori-Panin

THE ASANTEHENE, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has stated categorically that there is no animosity and rivalry between Asanteman and Okyeman so the public should treat such reports with the contempt it deserves.

In a speech, which was laden with Asante and Akyem history, he indicated that the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi and the Ofori Panin Fie at Kyebi had remained peaceful and worked closely together for so many years.

He, therefore, wondered why some people have been falsely spreading wild rumours that the Okyenhene, who is his younger brother, is his (Otumfuo’s) arch enemy, even though there is no animosity between them.

“Asanteman and Okyeman are one people and we have lived in peace for so many years; in fact my visit to Kyebi today, is only to cement that healthy relationship”, he said, attracting wild applause.

According to him, he doesn’t feel comfortable when people spread rumours that the Okyenhene is his rival, stressing that there is nothing of that nature, therefore such reports should be disregarded.

The Asantehene was speaking during a grand durbar of chiefs and people of Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area to mark the 75th anniversary of the death of the late Okyenhene, Nana Ofori Atta I, at Kyebi on Thursday afternoon.

The event was graced by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, former President Jerry John Rawlings and his wife, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings and scores of paramount chiefs from Asanteman and other parts of Ghana.

Tracing the history, the Asantehene disclosed that the people of Akyem Abuakwa are from Adanse, who migrated to their present location, adding that their relatives; Ejisu, Offinso and Manso Nkwanta are still swearing to the Golden Stool.

Otumfuo stated that there has never been tension, animosity and rivalry between Asanteman and Okyeman and there would never be one, so those who have been pushing that diabolic agenda would never succeed.

He particularly mentioned the key roles that the late Okyenhene, Nana Ofori Atta I played in putting pressure on the British to allow the then Asantehene, Otumfuo Prempeh I to return from captivity in Seychelles to Kumasi.

The Asantehene, therefore, said it is appropriate for him to move his Asanteman, made up of some powerful paramount chiefs from the Ashanti, Eastern, Volta and Brong Ahafo Region to Kyebi in honour of the late Nana Ofori Atta.

Touching on other pressing national issues, Otumfuo said the country is retarding in growth partly because the country has ignored its tradition and culture and adopted foreign culture after attaining independence in 1957.

Otumfuo said traditional leaders still have crucial roles to play to help accelerate Ghana’s growth therefore there is the need for the constitution to be reviewed to give chiefs more roles to play towards national development.

On his part, the Okyenhene, Osagyefuo Amotia Ofori Panin described the Asantehene as his brother, stressing that he cherishes the cordial relationship between him and Otumfuo so he would jealously protect it.

He commended the Asantehene for his invaluable roles towards the development of education in the country through the formation of the Otumfuo Education Fund, saying that chiefs are key players in the area of national growth.

One of the highlights of the programme was when the Asantehene openly embraced the Okyenhene, a nice gesture which attracted wild applause from all the people present at the function.

FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr, Charles Takyi Boadu & Daniel Bampoe, Kyebi