The Omanhene and president of the Japekrom Traditional Council, Okatakyie Amoa Aturu Nkonkonkyia II, has made a passionate appeal to President Akufo-Addo to assist the Japekrom Traditional Council in its quest to implement a 19 November 2015 Supreme Court decision on a land dispute between his people and those of the Drobo Traditional Area.
Addressing President Akufo-Addo at Jubilee House in Accra today (19 October 2020), when he paid a courtesy call on him, Okatakyie Amoa Aturu Nkonkonkyia II noted that the Drobohene had taken the Japekrom Traditional Council to court on behalf of the Drobo Stool some time in 1996, laying claim to all the stool lands of the Mpuasu-Japekrom Traditional Area, including the stool lands of the Awasu Traditional Area and Atuna Divisional Area.
The case, the Omanhene said, had “travelled from the high court through to the Supreme Court. The Drobo Stool lost all the cases from high dourt to the Supreme Court, with the Supreme Court on 19 November 2015 dismissing the appeal of the Drobo Stool and affirming the orders of the Court of Appeal that sat in Kumasi on 27 July 2012.”
Supreme Court decision
The Supreme Court, affirming the orders of the Court of Appeal, ordered that the Drobo stool should acknowledge ownership and title of the lands to the Japekrom stool.
It also ordered that the Drobohene and his subjects now in possession of the Mpuasu-Japekrom stool lands should seek the grant of their respective lands from the Mpuasu-Japekrom stool.
“These were the orders and we fully stand by,” the Omanhene of Japekrom said. “The story being [peddled in] various corners that Japekromhene insists on ejecting the people of Drobo from their stool land is nothing but a fallacy.
“I have not made such a demand anywhere, publicly or privately.
“The Drobohene, his elders and subjects have vehemently refused to adhere to the court orders, leading to the disturbance of peace in the area. This is the source of the insecurity in the area, resulting in the massacre of 17 October 2018.
“We wish to bring to the attention of the president that there has never been a chieftaincy dispute between Japekrom and Drobo, as the two are separate traditional areas. The land litigation has also been settled by the judgment of the Supreme Court of 19 November 2015.
“The issue at stake, therefore, is solely on the implementation of the court’s orders and in this we seek the president’s assistance to ensure a lasting peace for the area,” the Omanhene said.
President Akufo-Addo, responding to the request from the chiefs and elders of the Japekrom Traditional Area, said he was pleased with the reconciliatory tone of the submission by the Japekrom Omanhene and by the quest to achieve lasting peace in that part of the Bono Region.
He added that, to the extent that the Supreme Court has delivered a decision on the land dispute, finality has been brought to the matter. To this end, the implementation of the decision should not be a problem at all, he said.
The president pledged that his government will give the Omanhene’s request adequate attention so that the matter can be settled.
Wilberforce Asare / Asaase Radio