The Aboakyire festival will from next year be organised by the Effutu Traditional Council with support from the Municipal Assembly, Mr Kofi Dzamesi, Minister of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs has said.
Amidst chieftaincy disputes, the organisation of the festival was taken away from the Effutu Traditional Council and handed over to the assembly.
But speaking at a grand durbar of chiefs and people of Effutu at this year’s Aboakyire festival on Saturday, 6 May, Mr Dzamesi disclosed that “from today, this Aboakyire festival would be organised by the Effutu Traditional Council with support from the Municipal Assembly.”
He urged the chiefs and people of Effutu to use the occasion to preach unity among the various traditional groups. “I’m very happy because I‘ve begun to see the unity that we have all yearned for. I’ve seen the class and honour and dignity of this festival. Festivals are for the chiefs and people of the community and they are supposed to be peaceful, interesting, vibrant and meant to unify everybody in the community,” he stated.
The chiefs and people of Effutu climaxed this year’s festival with a show of rich cultural and traditional display.
The celebration started with the performance of rituals by the elders and king makers of Otuano royal stool house in collaboration with the two Asafo companies – Twifo and Dentsifo – from Monday 29 April to Saturday 6 May 2017
Twifo, the white cloth group, captured the first deer at 10am on Saturday paving the way for the celebrations.
Aboakyire festival is a celebration to mark the migration of the Effutu people from the ancient Ghana Empire or Sudan led by a god named Pankye-Otu, who instructed them to sacrifice a young member of the royal family every year to pacify him.
This request was too much for them. He then asked for a live wild cat, which again was causing a lot of deaths of hunters. So upon several appeals to the god by their traditional priest, he accepted their plea to offer him a live antelope or deer instead.
It is believed if the Twifo group brought the deer first, then it meant there was going to be plenty of food for that year and if the Dentsifo did first, there was going to be plenty of fish. The first group is also regarded to have the bravest men in the town.