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Ahantaman Prepares To Receive Head Of Slain King


Photo Reporting: Ahantaman and Nana Badu Bonsu (R)Ahantaman Prepares To Receive Head Of Slain King

Busua(w/r), July 30, GNA - The Ahanta Traditional council in the Western Region has began feverish preparations to receive the head of the late King Otumfo Badu Bonsu II, which had been in the Netherlands for the past 171 years.

Members of the council held an emergency meeting on Wednesday at Busua, the traditional capital, to deliberate on an elaborate programme for the ceremony that would be national in character. A special planning committee comprising eminent chiefs, the regional coordinating council and the regional house of chiefs would be formed to plan the funeral and other rites and to prepare a final resting place for the late Ahanta King.

Otumfuo Badu Bonsoe XV, present occupant of the Ahanta Stool, commended both the present government and the erstwhile New Patriotic Party (NPP) administration for pursuing the people's demand for the return of the head of their King whom they described as a "hero of his time", so they could accord it a dignified burial.

He however expressed reservation about arrangements initiated for the transfer of the head, which he claimed the traditional council had not been adequately involved in.

Recounting the incident that led to the capture and killing of King Badu Bonsoe II in 1838, the Ahantahene said it was as a result of a bitter struggle to assert the freedom and dignity of his people. He said the invading Dutch force that was assisted by a contingent from Nigeria looted gold and gold ornaments including the King's sword and war dress that was plaited with gold parchments.

He said the traditional council, through the government and other relevant institutions, would press for the return of those items and compensation in the form of schools, roads and other social projects for the people.

Otumfuo Badu Bonsoe said the council would formally inform President John Atta Mills of the arrival of the head of their slain King, and about their preparations towards a befitting burial ceremony. He called on the chiefs and people of the area to support the programme to make it a success.

Nana Etsin Kofi II, chief of Aboade and leader of a delegation that represented the traditional council at a ceremony to transfer the head to the Ghana government at The Hague, Netherlands, on July 23, 2009, briefed the meeting on the ceremony.

He said he had to accept to be a signatory to the declaration of transfer documents after a second thought, since he was specifically instructed to identify the head and to report back to the council before any transfer could be done.

The declaration of transfer which was also signed by the Dutch Foreign Minister and the Head of the Ghana Mission in The Hague, was read at the meeting.




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