Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has reportedly rejected portions of the Lands Act 2020 that empowers the citizenry to drag chiefs to court to account for the sale of lands.
The New Land Act makes the traditional authority a fiduciary over lands and gives subjects the power to demand accountability for the use of land sale revenues.
However, at a conference between the Ashanti Region House of Chiefs and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, the Asantehene shockingly claimed that regions under his control are excluded from the New Land Act’s implementation.
In the Ashanti Region House of Chiefs’ final meeting of the year, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, led a team from the Ministry to explain the new Lands Act at the request of the Council.
During the meeting, Mr. Samuel Abu Jinapor explained to the chiefs that “in the new Act, the chiefs are caretakers on the lands. They hold it in trust. So their subjects can demand accountability even in court. In many areas, chiefs misappropriate income from the sale of land.”
In his address, the Asantehene shockingly argued against the New Land Act.
According to him, the Asante Kingdom has its own systems of accountability when it comes to issues of the sale of land which they hold in trust for his office.
“The elders of various chiefs are the people who can call for accountability and that is when I step in. There is accountability in the kingdom but not to any individual “, he further stated.
“Not all that is printed here (the Act) is applicable to my jurisdiction. I put chiefs and fetish in charge of the lands in the kingdom. The chiefs are not accountable to any youth,” he stressed.