Armed police personnel Wednesday prevented supporters of a claimant to the New Juaben Stool, Baafuor Topen Sriboe, from slaughtering a sheep at the palace in Koforidua, to signify the destoolment of the Omanhene, Daasebdre Oti Boaten.
As of 1 p.m. armed policemen were guarding the empty palace as they allowed nobody including royals, entry.
The supporters of Baafuor Topen Sriboe, who were said to have the backing of some of the sub-chiefs in the area, have since aborted the ritual.
Baafuor Topen Sriboe confirmed to graphic.com.gh that his group, with the support of 15 sub-chiefs including the Abesimhene, Nana Adakwa, the Dumankwahene, Nana Okoyaw Akyeampong and the Owerebanhene (protector of the Black Stool and regalia) decided to slaughter the sheep to signify the destoolment of the Omanhene.
He explained that the action was informed by the fact that Daasebre Oti Boaten had not been staying at the palace since his enstoolment 22 years ago.
That situation, he said, had exposed the Black Stool and other regalia, which according to him were precious, to theft.
Baafour Topen Sriboe said because those items were sacred, they needed to be secured at all times at the palace.
Besides, he said, the Omanhene had driven out from the palace all those responsible for the safety of the Black Stool and the regalia, thus exposing them to theft.
He also claimed that Nana Yaa Daani, the New Juaben Queen must together with the Omanhene be removed because her activities were incompatible with the status granted her.
Baafuor Topen Sriboe who took graphic.com.gh through the succession line of New Juaben, said Daasebre Oti Boaten hailed from Old Juaben and was, therefore not to be the Omanhene of New Juaben.
He stated that although he (Topen Sriboe), was nominated and elected to be the Omanhene 22 years ago following the death of Nana Kwaku Boaten II, that could not materialise due to the machinations of Daasebre Oti Boaten who eventually occupied the stool.
Baafuor Topen Sriboe who showed a copy of a letter from the Municipal Police Command indicating that the rituals could be carried out at the palace or the elders could seek redress at the civil court, said a five-day notice would be given to the police as required for the event to take place peacefully.
?We do not want blood to be shed and that was why we stopped the ritual today but we will definitely slaughter the sheep to signify Daasebre Oti Boaten?s destoolment peacefully as required by tradition and the law?, Baafuor Topen Sriboe stated as he pointed to the sheep that would be used.
All attempts to get Daasebre Oti Boaten for his side of the story proved futile.
At his private residence at about 1 p.m. the message was that the Omanhene was at a meeting.
According to the New Juaben Municipal Police Commander, DSP Christopher Quaicoe, there had been several attempts to destool the Omanhene including one at the Jackson Park four months ago.
DSP Quaicoe said three weeks ago, the police had to unlock the gates to the palace after Bafuor Topen Sriboe and his group had locked up the gates to the palace so police supervised its unlocking after which Baafuor Topen Sriboe and his supporters were invited to see the Regional Police Commander in connection with the issue.
He said the police had to beef up security at the palace and residence of the Omanhene, after a representative of the Omanhene called for police protection upon hearing that Baafour Topen Sriboe and his supporters had planned to perform the ritual at 5 30 a.m Wednesday.