Sunday, August 6, 2017

Clans Clash At Asafutufiam Festival

3:20:00 PM

What usually is a very jubilant event patronized by several Ghanaians annually, turned violent as two factions fought over who to swear the oath of allegiance to the Paramount Chief at the 80th anniversary of the Asafotufiam festival.

Tradition has it that the Senior war captain of a particular clan swears allegiance to the paramount chief at the durbar. The Dangmebiawe clan reportedly was the chosen clan to designate a senior war captain to take the renewal of oath of allegiance to the paramount chief; Djetse Abram Kabu Akuaku III.

Tempers however flared when another faction, the Kabiawe Yumu was called on to take the oath before the Dangmebiawe clan. For a while, security persons at the event tried to tranquil tempers as both clans heckled each other with weapons, injuring others in the process.
Some persons were arrested by police personnel who were trying to control the situation.

Speaking to Ghanaweb, Secretary of the Festival Planning Committee, Jonathan Dokutso explained that the situation erupted because the designated faction to swear the oath, Dangmebiawe clan, did not have an appointed senior war captain to perform the role.

When we come to a durbar of this nature, it is the senior war captains who swear oath of allegiance to the paramount chiefs who have a role to play in the durbar, but at a time when a particular clan has not got such a senior war captain who will have to swear, then among themselves, they started hawking themselves.

Mr. Dokutso described the situation as unfortunate, indicating that it ought not to have occurred as it is completely against tradition. He explained that the clans involved would be called on a later date and spoken to and the appropriate actions be taken thereafter.

There is more improvement in the durbar, but unfortunately, a situation is against tradition and what we are saying is that, that is not the practice of Ada and we will call the families at the appropriate time and whatever sanctions there are, we will met it out, he said.

Asafotu Festival is celebrated by the Ga-Adangbe people of Ghana and Togo. The Ada/Dangbe East people celebrate Asafotu which is also called 'Asafotufiam', an annual warrior's festival celebrated by Ga-Dangbe people from the last Thursday of July to the first weekend of August. It commemorates the victories of the warriors in battle, fought by their ancestor which were all won, those who fell on the battlefield.

To re-enact these historic events, the warrior dresses in traditional battle dress and stage a mock battle. This is also a time when the young men are introduced to warfare to become worriors.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

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