Okyenhene Storms Manhyia… Akufo-Addo Joins for Dinner
The Okyenhene, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panin over the weekend paid a visit to the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II in his palace in Manhyia in the Ashanti Region and photos of the historic visit has created strong excitement among Ghana’s traditional and political fraternity.
It is the first time the two powerful traditional leaders have sat and dined on the same table at the Manhyia Palace and the gesture subtly but significantly debunks speculations of rivalry between the two highly respected traditional leaders.
In addition, the Asantehene and Okyenhene, for the first time, were seen riding in a Rolls-Royce of Otumfuo, through the principal streets of the Kumasi Metropolis on Saturday morning, attracting cheers from residents and onlookers.
Also, the two powerful traditional leaders were seen playing golf together on the greens of the Royal Golf Club in Kumasi and also having a hearty chat in public, to the admiration of the people, notably Kumasi residents.
The two dignitaries were to tee off for the official commencement of the 2nd Head of State Invitational Golf Tournament, which took place at the Royal Golf Club in Kumasi on Saturday morning.
Blow To Blow Account
The Okyenhene and his entourage, including divisional chiefs from the Akyem Abuakwa Traditional Area, in the Eastern region, arrived at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi, the Asantehene’s official seat, Friday evening.
Otumfuo granted audience to his guest, the Okyenhene, behind closed doors, after which the Okyenhene and his large delegation spent the night at the plush Golden Tulip Kumasi City Hotel.
Rolls Royce Ride
On Saturday morning, Okyenhene’s delegation stormed the Manhyia Palace where they joined the Asantehene and his contingent to move to the Royal Golf Club for the opening of the golf competition.
Significantly, Otumfuo and the Okyenhene sat in the Asantehene’s plush Rolls-Royce vehicle, registered as ‘Asantehene’ as they moved through the principal streets from the Manhyia Palace to the event venue.
The decision of the two monarchs to sit in the same vehicle was greeted with praises and applauds as the historic gesture has clearly debunked rumours that they are arch enemies.
The Asantehene, the Okyenhene, Manso Nkwanta Paramount Chief, Nana Bi Kusi Appiah and Sam Jonah, an accomplished business man, played an exhibition golf tournament to kick-start the competition.
During the exhibition game, both Otumfuo and the Okyenhene were seen applauding each other and also having a hearty chat on the greens of the Royal Golf Club, to the admiration of the people present.
Just as they had arrived for the tee off event, the Asantehene and his august guest also returned to the Manhyia Palace in the Rolls Royce vehicle, where they, reportedly, had breakfast together.
Dinner At Manhyia
Later Saturday night, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo also flew from Accra to Kumasi to join the Asantehene and the Okyenhene during a mega dinner, which was held at the Manhyia Palace.
The President, Otumfuo and the Okyenhene snapped pictures together before they joined the other top dignitaries that attended the merry-making programme, where deserving golfers, during the competition, were honoured.
There have been wild rumours that the Asantehene and Okyenhene are rivals and so they can never meet together. This mischief-spiced speculation often seemed to create tension and rivalry among Asantes and Akyems.
Even though officials of the Asantehene and the Okyenhene had constantly denied the rumour, which they described as blatant falsehood, the rumour continues springing up on a daily basis.
The rumour gained weight recently after a clearly angry Otumfuo accused two top government officials, Gabby Otchere Darko and Nana Asante Bediatuo, who coincidentally are both Akyems, of sabotaging him.
But if what happened between the two top dignitaries in Kumasi on Saturday is anything to go by, then the much-talked-about rivalry between the Asantehene and Okyenhene clearly belong to history now.
By: Kwadwo Essel