Kofi Ako & V. Adjea Otae (1936)
LawGlobal Hub Judgment Report – West African Court of Appeal
Objection to jurisdiction of Tribunal of Paramount Chief—Tribunal has jurisdiction to determine right of succession of person, domiciled in its state, to land situated in another state—Section 43 (1) (g) of Native Administration Ordinance.
Held : Objection overruled.
Ofei Awere for Appellant. E. C. Quist for Respondent.
The following joint decision was delivered :—
KINGDON, C.J., NIGERIA, PETRIDES, C.J., GOLD COAST, AND WEBBER, C.J., SIERRA LEONE.
Objection has been taken that the Tribunal of the Paramount Chief of Akwapim had no jurisdiction to try this case, the property situate at Dodowa being outside the jurisdiction of the said Tribunal..
If this was an action relating to the ownership, possession or occupation of land situated within the State of the Paramount Chief of Akira Abuakwa, then clearly the Tribunal of the Paramount Chief of Akwapim would have no jurisdiction ; but it was contended by Counsel for the respondent that this action related to the succession to the property of a deceased native who had at the time of his death a fixed place of abode within the State of the Paramount Chief of Akwapim and that, therefore, the Tribunal of the Paramount Chief of Akwapim had jurisdiction under section 43 (1) (g) of the Native Administration Ordinance, Cap. 111.
Counsel for appellant admitted that this action related to succession to property, but since it appeared to him that this Court, in a case immediately prior to this, had adjudicated to the contrary, he took the objection to the jurisdiction on the ground stated above.
The case referred to by Counsel for the appellant is that of Amma Dua and Others v. Kwaku Kwamina and Others. In that case the main issue related to ownership of land, namely, ” was the deceased owner of a piece of land in another State ? ” If he was, there was no dispute as to who ought to succeed.
In this case the issue was mainly one of succession, and the Tribunal dealt with it as such, and having heard expert evidence on the customary law of succession to property obtaining in the Guan Division as to whom the land devolved upon, gave their decision rightly or wrongly.
We are of opinion that this is an action relating to the succession to property and the objection is therefore overruled.