Wednesday, August 22, 2007
OSU CELEBRATES HOMOWO
THE people of Osu yesterday poured out in their numbers amid fanfare and merry-making to celebrate their annual Homowo.
Unlike last year’s event, which was characterized by clashes between chieftaincy factions in the area, this year’s celebration was generally peaceful.
However, there were a few incidents that nearly marred the event but for the vigilance of a 20-member police team, under the command of ASP Ameyaw Afriyie, Osu District Commander, who were deployed to the area to ensure, law and order.
While the Osu Mantse, Nii Nortey Owuo 111, was sprinkling the traditional food, “Kpokpoi”, a group of people said to be supporters of a rival claimant to the stool also went round to sprinkle the food.
That aroused tension in the area but the police had to intervene to ensure that there was no clash.
When the Ghana Television (GTV) news crew attempted to cover the activities of the rival faction, some irate persons seized the camera amidst heckling and demanded from the cameraman the authority with which he decided to shoot, but they later gave it back to the crew.
That action was enough signals to scare journalists covering the event away from the hostile zone.
For one hour, Nii Nortey Owuo defied the rain and threats from rival claimant to the Osu Stool, to sprinkle “kpokpoi” on some streets and in some Royal Family Houses.
At exactly 1 p.m., Nii Nortey Owuo, who wore red cloth and headgear, stepped out of his palace, together with his royal retinue, to begin the performance of an age-old tradition so revered by the people.
The sprinkling of ‘kpokpoi’ attracted hundreds of people, including citizens of Osu, Ghanaians from other parts of the country and foreigners.
The large crowd hailed the chief as he performed his annual traditional task, amidst shouts of “Nii boni oyeo, ye! Nii bo ni oshwaa, shwa!”, to wit, Nii Nortey Owuo was the right chief to rule and the right chief to sprinkle the traditional food.
Others also chanted, “Woya old road!” which was, literally, an endorsement of his kingship as against any new kingship as against any new kingship.
Among the Royal Houses where the Osu Mantse sprinkled the traditional food were Omaboe We, Nii Tenpon We, Dama We, Ofori Kpono We, Teinor We, Lomotey We and Odartey Sro We.
He did not sprinkle kpokpoi in the Adu Kpono We, which reason palace sources attributed to the unpreparedness of the house.
Addressing journalists after performing the rites, Nii Nortey Owuo said the success of the celebration and the huge support given to him by the people was an endorsement of his kingship.
He made it clear that he was the Legitimate Chief of Osu because he had not been destooled, neither was he dead, and so whoever claimed to be a rival chief was deceiving himself.
“The celebration was very successful. It’s a sign of progress and I’m sure next year by this time we would have settled all our petty quarrels”, he said.
Daily Graphic - Wednesday, August 22, 2007 Page: 24