Times have changed and true, true times have changed, otherwise who born dog, that Bernard Antwi Boasiako, aka Chairman Wontumi, the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), will call the bluff of the occupant of the Golden Stool and will just be cautioned and asked to go and sin no more.
Truly, the aura and the ancient myth, surrounding the occupant of the Golden Stool, Otumfuo Osei Tutu ll, the Ashanti King, has disappeared and under normal circumstances, I would have attributed it to modern civilization and the enlightenment of the Ashanti King because of his level of education and adventure around the world but in the light what happened at the Manhyia Palace, I would say the great King of Ashanti has been silenced by Political powers.
The Ashanti Kingdom, this week, suffered its biggest humiliation at the hands of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), the party seen by many, especially Ashantis as their own.
The NPP, which has its beginnings from Kumasi, in the Ashanti Region before Ghana’s independence, started as the National Liberation Movement (NLM) or “Matse Meho” in the twi language and also politically known as the Busia Danquah Dombo Tradition.
Traditionally, the party is seen as an Ashanti political party because of where it all started, the personalities involved in its beginning, with the aim of Ashantis not succumbing to any political power but their King and so predominately the people of Ashanti, since independence, have always voted for the Busia, Danquah, Dombo Tradition and it is very difficult convincing an Ashanti to vote for another political party other than their party.
The Ashanti Region has always been the stronghold of the party and because of the region’s numerical strength in terms of population, has in most cases, won elections with only two regions, the Ashanti and the Eastern regions, instead of winning about half (1/2) of the 16 regions of the country because the Ashantis see themselves as been born and bred in the party.
This is the political party, nurtured by Ashantis, that has handed down the Kingdom’s biggest ever humiliation in the history of the Ashantis. Someone who is not regarded as a pure indigene of Ashanti, should stand up to the Ashanti King in a very disparaging manner, all because that individual has the backing of the Government.
In times past, no son or daughter of Ashanti would dare utter derogatory words like “I have built my own ‘Kingdom’, I have my own police and military and I will speak my mind to Otumfuo if I disagree on an issue with him. He is nobody”. These were Bernard Antwi Boasiako’s words, which the Asanteman Council saw as an affront to the Ashanti King.
The NPP’s Regional Chairman upon being summoned to appear before the Asanteman Council in the absence of the Ashanti King, went into hiding with the excuse that he was unwell and only resurfaced on the return of Otumfuo to the Manhyia Palace.
At a meeting at the Manhyia Palace on Monday, January 29, 2024, the NPP Regional Chairman dismissed claims that he has spoken against the Ashanti King and affirmed his reverence for the Golden Stool and the occupant Otumfuo Osei Tutu ll.
The Chiefs who hitherto had chastised and condemned the behaviour of the NPP regional Chairman, now praised him and highlighted his humility towards the Golden stool and rather admonished Nana Kwaku Duah, Chief of Kokosu, for engaging in active politics in violation of the 1992 constitution which bars Chiefs from partisan politics.
Even before the Manhyia meeting, rumour has it that the Asanteman Council would withdraw their accusations of the Regional Chairman because of political intervention from the seat of Government and some very damaging information the party and its regional Chairman have on some of the Chiefs.
Otumfuo, where is thy sting? As recent as the 1980s, what is happening today could not have happened because the Asantehene at the time was deemed very powerful and no resident of Ashanti could disrespect him.
Gradually, the Akyems, led by the President, are extinguishing the potency of the Ashanti Kingdom, a dream the President and his clique of Akyem elites, have conceived for so long and are now using the very party the Ashantis love so much to achieve their intention.
The dream of the President, as far back as 2008, even before he became the President of Ghana, has been to elevate the Okyeman to a Kingdom status, parallel to the Ashanti Kingdom and launched a book, “The Okyeman Kingdom” in that regard, forgetting that under the 1992 constitution of the country, there is no King and there is no Kingdom in Ghana but the title only exists among the people who see themselves as such.
The silent war between the Ashanti King and the seat of Government, vividly reminds some of us of the days of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC), when prominent Ashantis detested the military junta for how they handled some members of the Ashanti Royal Family, which they considered dishonorable, creating hostility between Manhyia and the AFRC at the time.
Asanteman, where thy victory? Chairman Wontumi is set free and asked to go and sin no more. The accuser, the Kokosu Chief has been reprimanded and asked to stay off politics as directed by the 1992 constitution of the country.
Once again, the President has won, using the very political party Ashantis love to hit at them where it hurts so much, succeeding in making the Ashanti Chiefs look stupid in the eyes of their subjects and Ghanaians as a whole.
Would the love Ashantis have for the NPP remain the same or would it change? Time will tell but Ashantis love their party and would vote for it because they don’t see the President as the founder or owner of the party and are only praying for the President to end his term in office and leave the party for those who perceive themselves as the owners of the party.
And that is why the President, aware some leaders of the party are in a hurry to get rid of him, is also working steadily to hand over the party to them in opposition just as His Excellency J. A. Kufuor did in 2009.
Where does this leave Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, the Vice President and Presidential candidate of the NPP? Consistently, I have said, he has been sacrificed for the iniquities of the party and John Agyekum Kufuor by Nana Addo Danquah Akufo Addo and his Akyem elite group.
Source – Jojo Bruce-Quansah