On 20th December 2021, the Ghanavoiceonline.com carried the story of a forum held between “the Asere Dzaasetse of the Ga State in the Greater Accra Region, Nii Amarkai lIl” and Property Owners at the National Sports Complex enclave at the Race Course and its environs.
According to the report the Forum was in collaboration with the Executives of the National sports complex Regularization and Affiliate Association.
The said Forum was also said to be organised by “allodial owners of the Asere Stool Lands “.
At the said forum, Nii Amarkai llI, and his collaborators made a number of misrepresentations, inaccurate assertions and claims about the Asere Stool, as well as the allodial Owners of the “Sports Complex lands”.
They also allegedly directed members of the Sports Complex Community to the “appropriate authorities” for the issue of land Documents, among others.
Nii Amarkai’s collaborator also tried to manipulate and twist the history of the migration of the Asere people “from Israel to Ayawaso and to Ga Mashie”.
As the current occupant of the Asere Mantse Stool and the Family that had Traditionally laid claim to Mukose Lands that covers the entire Sports complex and its surrounding Lands, the NIKOI O’LAI STOOL FAMILY of Asere Djorshie in Ga Mashie wishes to correct the various unfortunate impressions created by Nii Amarkai ll and his collaborators and thereby set the records straight:
1. ASERE STOOL
Nii Amarkai llI, refers to “Asere Stool” as if there is a Stool that could be so described. The FACT of the matter is that Asere has TWO STOOLS that are distinct and independent of each other which have been ruling Asere, in a system of ROTATION instituted by the Government of the Republic of Ghana, since 1959. These are:
a. The Aboriginal NIKOI O’LAI STOOL of Asere Djorshie We which was acknowledged by both the Government of the Republic of Ghana in 1959 and the Supreme Court of Ghana in 2005 as the ASERE MANTSE’S STOOL.
b. The AKOTIA OWORSIKA STOOL which “for well over a century was allowed justly or unjustly to wield the reigns of government in Asere”.
Each of the two Stools has its own structure and offices, including its own Dzaasetse and Dzaasefoi to administer the Asere Division during its tenure.
As it were, the Dzaasetse (ship) of Nii Amarkai lll, is limited only to the Akotia Oworsika Stool and NOT the entire Asere Division of the Ga State. Nii Amarkai lII, is properly stated, the Dzasetse of the Akotia Oworsika Stool only. He can accordingly, neither speak for the entire Asere nor the Nikoi O’lai Stool Family.
In spite of the above knowledge, Nii Amarkai lIl, Dzaasetse of the Akotia Oworsika Stool only, cannot come to terms with himself and therefore, in complete and contumacious disregard of tradition and the prevailing laws of Ghana continues to shamelessly parade himself as Asere Dzasetse and sometimes as acting Asere Mantse while at the same time gone ahead to illegally “install and outdoor” two supposed Asere Mantsemei with stool names thus:
Nii Asere Boi (2007) and
Nii Teiko Ansah (2017).
It might further, be relevant to point out that, in line with the principle of rotation, the Nikoi O’lai Stool Family of Asere Djorshie installed in 2006 a substantive Asere Mantse under the Stool name, Nii Nikoi O’lai Amashie III.
Nii Nikoi O’lai Amashie lII, has been formally registered and gazetted by the National House of Chiefs in Kumasi. He is also a member of the Ga Traditional
2. MUKOSE LANDS (INCLUDING THE SPORTS COMPLEX AND ALLIED LANDS)
The Nikoi O’1ai Stool Family of Asere Djorshie has traditionally laid claim to the lands covering an area of over 15000 (Fifteen Thousand) Acres and known generally as “MUKOSE LANDS” as part of the Family’s Ancestral Properties.
Mukose Lands includes the entire National Sports Complex and adjoining lands that was acquired by the Government of the Republic of Ghana in 1975.
Payment of compensation has been marred since the acquisition by conflicting claims by families and individuals who have also made claims.
Massive encroachment has also been the bane of the area. The problems notwithstanding, the Nikoi Olai Stool Family has not and cannot abandon its claims to the Sports Complex and the larger Mukose lands.
The above notwithstanding, it must clearly be stated that, should Nii Amarkai lll, assertion that the Sports Complex Lands are Asere Stool lands be even accepted, the onus would still remain with the NIKOI O’LAI STOOL FAMILY of Asere Djorshie, which by the established principle of Rotation of Seats at Asere, is the current OCCUPANT OF THE ASERE STOOL.
The Asere Mantse with the stool name Nii Nikoi O’lai Amashie 1l, has been acknowledged and gazetted by the National House of Chiefs and he is currently a member of the Ga Traditional Council.
That the Nikoi O’lai Stool of Asere Djorshie is the current ruler of the entire Asere would easily illustrate why Nii Amarkai llI, Asere Dzaasetse of the AKOTIA OWORSIKA STOOL, would talk about “ALLODIAL Owners of Asere Stool Lands” and “APPROPRIATE AUTHORITIES” to issue genuine documents” without being specific by associating names to the offices. Such hypocrisy and deception.
3. ASERE KOTOPONG
Nii Amarkai lIl, Asere Dzaasetse of the Akotia Oworsika Stool used the above mentioned name inter-changeably as follows:
• Asere Kotopong
• Asere Kotopong Royal Stool
• Asere Kotopong State, etc
As indicated earlier, there is only ONE ASERE QUARTER of the Ga State with two Chieftaincy Stools that rotate.
Accordingly, there are two groups of Asere peoples:
The Nikoi O’lai Stool Family of Asere
The Akotia Oworsika Stool Families of Asere.
These two names were the only recognized Family Stools of Asere from the N.T.Clerk Committee, The Governments decision on the Clerk committee report, High Court and Supreme Court cases and judgments as well as representation at the Ga Traditional Council and the National Register of Chiefs.
There is therefore NO STOOL or Family that has been recognized anywhere as Asere Kotopong”.
Indeed, the word “Kotopong” was the nickname given to the Eagle (Okropong) that soured ahead of Nil Nikoi O’lai and Nii Ayi Kushie when they led the Aseres through the wilderness till they settled at Ayawaso. Nii Amarkai llI, and people who share in his vision and mission should come again on the title of “kotopong”.
4. BRIEF HISTORY OF ASERE
It is sad to note that, in this era of internet and social media where information is easily available a so called senior Ga or Ga Elder will misrepresent his family’s history to the point of ridicule or embarrassment to all discerning members of the society.
One Alhaji Abdul Azziz Ni Ayi Tagoe who described himself as “the main Oworsika Royal Stool House Secretary” stated that ‘one Nii Okai Kwei led the Aseres from Israel through Syria, Egypt, Sudan, Nigeria, through Cotonou, Togo up to Ayawaso where they settled for some years until 1680 when they moved down to Ga Mashie”.
What a joke and insult to the leaders of the Gas across difficult terrain to the “Promised land of Ayawaso?”.
Where was Israel at the time of the Ga Migration? Even if they originated from Israel is it possible that they moved northwards to Syria before coming down to Egypt?
The so called “Secretary to the main Akotia Oworsika Stool”, if indeed, should know that the only Okai Kwei in Ga history at Ayawaso was a third generation Ayi Kushie who was the son of Mankpong Okai and the Obutu princess, Dode Akaibi. Okai Kwei was the last of the Ayawaso Chiefs who fought the Akwamu until the sacking/destruction of Ayawaso in 1680 leading to the eventual relocation of Gas from Ayawaso to the Coast.
The said Alhaji also narrated a weird and concocted view of Asere-Ga Mantse relations.
Alhaji Tagoe and his Dzaasetse, Nii Amarkai lll, should bow down their heads in shame for such undignified narrations and behavior.
The Nikoi Olai Stool Family of Asere Djorshie wishes to seize this opportunity to advise all residents of the Sports Complex Enclave and other areas in Accra who might be anxious to regularize their documents or obtain genuine documents to be wary of self-seeking Ga Elders and charlatans who would stop at nothing to obtain recognition with a view to deceiving and obtaining benefits.
Reputable institutions such as the Chieftaincy Secretariat and the Ga Traditional Council exist to provide appropriate technical advice on land issues.
The current Occupant of the Asere Stool and the Nikoi O’lai Stool Family shall also be available to offer advice when contacted.
The Nikoi O’lai Stool Family Secretariat is located at Ayalolo, almost adjacent to the old Accra High School buildings off the Richard Akwei Memorial School in Accra.
Issued by: Daniel Ashie-Kotei (Head of Family of Nikoi O’lai Stool Family of Asere Djorshie)
Below is the full statement: