Asantehene’s Anniversaries Bucket List Unveiled
There are a plethora of events designed to mark three historically auspicious anniversaries by Asanteman this year spearheaded by Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II.
Beginning with the 150th Anniversary celebration of the Sagrenti War, the centenary of the return of Nana Prempeh I from exile and the 25th enstoolment anniversary of Otumfuo, Asanteman will attract visitors from both within and outside the country.
Addressing the press at a briefing on February 2, 2024, to unveil the series of events to mark the anniversaries, the Chairman of the Planning Committee, Nana Otuo Serebuo II said the events are consciously crafted to be memorable.
In a brief recount, Nana Otuo Serebuo said the Sagrenti War as it was named by the British was not actually a war from the Asante’s perspective but rather a backdoor attack as the British stormed the Palace of the then Asantehene in his absence, stole valuables and burnt down the Palace.
As part of the events commemorating the War, a symposium will take place at the Great Hall of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) on February 6, 2024. Speakers will include Prof. Emmanuel Akyeampong, the Oppenheimer Faculty Director of the Harvard University Centre for African Studies and Professor of History and African and African American Studies at Harvard University, and Dr. Tom McCaskie, the Head of the Centre of West African Studies at Birmingham University.
At noon on the same day at KNUST, a book titled “History of Asante”, authored by Otumfuo Sir Agyeman Prempeh II and edited by Dr. McCaskie, will be launched.
Two days after this, what has been dubbed as “Kuntunkuni” Durbar will be held at Dwabrem at the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi.
After a successful negotiation to have some of the stolen items returned, the first batch of the artefacts, specifically from the Fowler Museum in Los Angeles will be officially presented to His Majesty during the durbar.
25 Years On The Golden Stool
Preceding the 25th Anniversary of Otumfuo will be the commissioning of the new Manhyia auditorium in the Palace as well as the presentation of an Honourary Doctorate Degree to the King by the University of Cape Coast (UCC).
As part of the pre-anniversary events, a clean-up exercise will take place within all traditional areas of Asanteman on March 30, 2024, with a decongestion exercise concurrently in some parts of Kumasi.
On April 21, there will be a religious feast for all fetish priests in Asanteman spearheaded by a constituted Religious Affairs Committee.
At the Bogyawe grounds in the Manhyia Palace on April 24 will be a feast for ethnic groups domiciled in Asanteman. The day coincides with an Awukudae and will be marked with a durbar for Asantehene and the ethnic groups in Asanteman.
On the eve of April 25 will be fireworks activities in selected parts of Kumasi including the Cultural Centre, Hero’s Park, Manhyia, Tafo, Aboabo Post Office and Adum.
Also, a non-denominational thanksgiving service on April 26 which will mark exactly 25 years of distinguished leadership on the Golden Stool, will be held at the Dwabrem grounds with a dinner later in the day in the Palace where funds will be raised in support of the Otumfuo Osei Tutu II Foundation (OOTIIF).
Meanwhile, the Silver Jubilee Durbar will be held at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium on May 12. It will be preceded by a musical concert and Asantehene’s 75th birthday on May 10 and 6 respectively.
A thanksgiving ceremony will be held at the Cyprian Church in recognition of Otumfuo’s birthday and a strictly-by-invitation birthday dinner on the same day.
Return From Exile
Post the enstoolment anniversary, Asanteman will hold a lecture and symposium to mark the 100th anniversary in commemoration of the return of Prempeh I from Seychelles Island.
The leader who posed much threat to the British after his exile in 1896 was brought back in November 21, 1924.
Details of this event will be communicated in due course.
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