The Okuapehemaa, Nana Afua Nketia Obuo II, and the Asonahene of the Akuapem Traditional Area, Nana Kwasi Omenako II, have jointly asked Odehye Kwadwo Kesse Antwi to vacate the Okuapehene's Palace at Akropong-Akuapem in the Eastern Region after being found guilty of contempt in the process that installed him as Okuapehene.
On March 17, this year, a High Court in Koforidua, presided over by Justice Mrs Doris Dabanka Bekoe, found Odehye Kwadwo Kesse and Madam Lily Agyeman, the Abrewatia of Akropong, guilty of disobeying the order of the Judicial Committee of the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs, which directed them to follow the appropriate traditional process for a fresh nomination of the next Okuapehene.
The Judicial Committee had given the ruling on Thursday, April 30, 2020, but the next day, Friday, May 1, 2020, instead of following the traditional process where the Okuapehene is nominated by the Okuapehemaa, Odehye Kwadwo Kesse Antwi was enstooled as Okuapehene after the Abrewatia had secretly selected and nominated him in total disregard of the ruling and the traditional process.
The High Court, after finding them guilty of contempt on March 17, this year, imposed a GHC10,000.00 fine each, in default of which each would serve 14 days imprisonment.
On March 24th, this year, they both paid the fines to the High Court.
In a letter written through their lawyer, Mr Kwaku Ansa-Asare, dated March 28, 2021, the Okuapehemaa and the Asonahene said the conviction of Odehye Kwadwo Kesse Antwi and Madam Lily Agyeman, meant that the purported "installation" of Odehye Kwadwo Kesse has been nullified and he, therefore, ceases to be a chief.
It reminded the two of the need to fully comply with the decision and order of the court.
The letter said "each of you on March 24, 2021, paid the fine of GHC10,000.00 in impartial compliance with the decision of the court but you are still occupying and using the seat of the Okuapehene to wit the Ahenfie."
It reminded them of the need to use the appropriate process in the nomination and installation of the next Okuapehene.
Meanwhile, Odehye Kwadwo Kesse Antwi and Madam Lily Agyemang have appealed against their conviction in the contempt case saying the High Court erred in assuming jurisdiction of the case.
Among other reliefs being sought is the refund of the GHC10,000.00 fine they paid to the Court.
The chieftaincy dispute erupted when the Okuapehene, Oseadeeyo Nana Addo Dankwa III, died and there was the need for a successor to the late Paramount Chief.
The Akuapem chieftaincy dispute has 'since travelled' to the Eastern Regional House of Chiefs and finally at the National House of Chiefs, in Kumasi, the Ashanti regional capital.