Prince Daniel Kojo Tengey Djokoto was born in Anyako, Anlo State – a picturesque lagoon island situated at the peninsular of the Keta lagoon – on 27 May 1924.
He was the second son of Chief Tenge Dzokoto III who was installed as Dufia, or City Ruler, of Anyako and served as the Miafiaga (Commander-in-chief, left-wing division) of the Anlo State from the 21 of September 1921 until 1946, reigning for quarter of a century.
His mother was Mama Martha Agluma Gbormittah of Anyako, a trader at the port town of Simpa, now referred to as Winneba. She had assimilated the subtle influences of the Victorian style, as a result of a swift change in the social structure and behavioural patterns of the town, and was relatively more receptive to a western way of life as compared to his ultra-conservative, traditionalist and anti-imperialist father.
Daniel’s parents arrived at a compromise and decided to send the Prince to receive his elementary education at the African Methodist Episcopal Zion school (A. M. E) in Winneba, 1932. He was a student at the A. M. E. Zion school until the completion of his Standard VII certificate examination which he passed with distinction.
Upon completion of his elementary education, D. K. T. Djokoto was awarded a scholarship and enrolled at the famous Achimota College to train as a teacher in 1939. In a nostalgic conversation with a childhood bosom-friend of his, Mr. Erasmus Alexander Kwabla Kalitsi recalled Daniel’s passion for rhetoric, poetry and art during his years at the green hill. An avid sportsman, he particularly enjoyed weightlifting and lawn tennis too.
During this period, however, Daniel’s father, Chief Tengey Djokoto III, faced political unrest and toppled an internal uprising against his authority as Dufia of Anyakothrough a series of intense litigation disputes. He emerged successful in the Anyako senior Chieftaincy dispute in 1937, earning the title “Defender of the Dynasty”. He further laid a firm foundation for the establishment of the Dufiafe to preserve the long-term political order of the City and the prestige of the stool. After his death in 1946, the family, threatened by the prospects of legal disputes to its stronghold, decided to have its own son as a lawyer, and with his qualifications, Daniel became the ideal candidate for the award.
Meanwhile, Daniel was retained at Achimota College as a pupil teacher for about a year before the A. M. E Zion school insisted, he returned back to teach there. Daniel then remained a pupil teacher at the African Methodist Episcopal Zion school until 1950.
He enrolled at the University College of the Gold Coast, as a founder member of the Legon Hall, together with contemporaries such as A. N. B. Andrews, E. N. Omaboe and J. H. Mensah, where he read a Bachelors of Arts in the Classics between 1952-1955.
As a student, Daniel was moved by the spirit of the political revolution which had been set in motion by Kwame Nkrumah. By 1951, Osagyefo had become the Prime Minister of the dominion of Ghana and Komla Agbeli Gbedemah, a confidante of Osagyefo who was elected to the Legislative Assembly, also from the City of Anyako, Anlo State, espoused the ideals of a modern fully autonomous democratic Republic to Prince D. K. T. Djokoto.
Djokoto embraced this vision despite his family’s decades-long, carefully orchestrated, agenda to overthrow British rule and return the Anlo State to its status as a fully independent Nation-state once more. In Daniel’s penultimate year, he was awarded a bursary scholarship to proceed on a three-month study tour of the United Kingdom by the nouveau africanised Kojo Botsio-led Ministry of Education. Particularly inspired by his grandfather’s heroism and diplomatic prowess, Djokoto relished the opportunity of joining the struggle to topple British imperialism on the Gold Coast once and for all.
Career as a Pioneer Diplomat.
Upon his return to the Gold Coast, D. K. T. Djokoto disclosed his intention to read law to the family who fulfilled their pledge to finance his education abroad. He enrolled at the Inns of Court School of Law, University of London on 6 May 1955 and gained his Bachelor of Laws in 1958. While at the Inns of Court School of Law, D. K. T. Djokoto was appointed by Kwame Nkrumah as Second Secretary of Foreign Affairs at the Ghana High Commission, United Kingdom shortly after Ghana’s independence, which graced him with the honour of serving as a pioneer diplomat under the distinguished citizen Sir Edward Okyere Asafu-Adjaye who was appointed by Osagyefo as Ghana’s first High Commissioner to the United Kingdom in 1957.
He subsequently enrolled into the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple and was admitted to the Bar of England & Wales in 1960. He then served as First Secretary for consular affairs and Minister-Counsellor at the Ghana High Commission, United Kingdom between 1961 – 1966.
As part of a delegation led by Mr. Theo O. Sowa, Consular-General in New York, D. K. T. Djokoto, together with Mr. T. R. D. Addai of the Ministry of Interior, was an adviser to the Republic of Ghana at the United Nations Conference on Consular Relations at Vienna, 1963. A consummate diplomat noted for his erudite negotiation skills, he insisted on liberal and progressive consular functions. At the Fifteenth Meeting of the First Committee, he strongly expressed that no State needed to communicate its reasons for refusing an exequatur.
A former teacher, he also took a keen interest in education too as a representative for Ghana at the Third Commonwealth Education Conference, 1964 led by Susanna Al-Hassan, Ghana’s first female to be appointed as a Minister.
In 1965, Djokoto represented the Republic of Ghana, together with Mr. Y. K. Quartey, Shipping Commissioner as a member of the Intergovernmental Maritime Consultative Organisation – a specialised agency of the United Nations responsible for the regulation of shipping.
By 1966, he became the Director, Legal and Consular Division, Ministry of External Affairs. During his short stint as Director, Djokoto served as a member of the Asian-African Legal Consultative Committee together with Mr. K. Gyeke Darko, Principal State Attorney, Ministry of Justice which, at the eight session of the committee in Bangkok, Thailand worked on the rights of refugees; relief against double taxation and fiscal evasion; the codification of the principles of peaceful coexistence and the Judgement of the International Court of Justice on South West Africa Cases.
He then served as Chargé D'affaires at the Ghana Embassy in Cairo, Egypt between 1966-1970 and was domiciled there with his family during the June War/Arab-Israeli Six-day War in 1967. He frequented the Republic of Ghana as a result of an appointment to a four-member commission which had been constituted to probe the affairs of the State Fishing Corporation in 1967. According to the Daily Graphic: Issue 5,843, July 15 1969, the committee, chaired by S. A. Wiredu, held 258 sittings, heard 243 witnesses and examined 256 exhibits which was presented to Chairman of the National Liberation Council, A. A. Afrifa.
He was to serve as an Ambassador to Italy but set his sights on the bench and as a ruler of his traditional state. He, therefore, returned to the Republic of Ghana to settle and was called to the Ghana Bar Association, 1971.
D. K. T. Djokoto was subsequently appointed as a judge to the Judicial Service of Ghana shortly before his death at the A. L. Adu Lodge – an official government residence close to the Osu Castle – at the age of 48. He was married to Agatha Bentuma Djokoto and they had 5 children together.