From Alfred Kwesi Adams
The chiefs and people of Upper Dixcove Traditional Area, a fishing community in the Ahanta West District, have climaxed their annual Kundum Festival with a colourful grand durbar of chiefs.
Kundum, which is celebrated by the people of Ahanta and Nzema, means ‘eat to satiate yourself’.
The durbar of chiefs climaxing the festival was grand, considering the number of paramount chiefs who graced the occasion.
Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II, President of the Western Regional House of Chiefs (WRHC) and Omanhene of Sefwi Bekwai was the Chairman for the occasion.
Other paramount chiefs such as Awulae Attibrukusu III, Omanhene of Lower Axim, Tetrete Akuamoah Sekyi, Omanhene of Wassa Akropong, Nana Kwesi Agyemang, Omanhene of Lower Dixcove, and Nana Kobina Nketiah, Omanhene of Essikado Traditional Area were among other chiefs who lined up to add colour to the Upper Dixcove durbar.
Celebrating this year’s Kundm under the theme ‘Dixcove Nkosoo’, the chiefs and people of Dixcove had every reason to be joyous.
This was because for a number of years the Kundum Festival had eluded them following a chieftaincy dispute over the selection of a paramount chief for the area.
But, with the successful installation of Hima Dekyi and his Queenmother, Nana Nda Esi III, the festival has been revived. The occasion was also used to launch the ‘Hima Dekyi Foundation’.
The Foundation will support brilliant but needy kids through school.
Nana Hima Dekyi XIV, Paramount Chief of Upper Dixcove, who launched the foundation, supported it with a seed capital of GH¢200,000.
The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) also supported the foundation with a sum of GH¢50,000. Dr. Baah Nuako, who represented GNPC Foundation, said the foundation was moved by the efforts of the Paramount Chief to promote education in his jurisdiction.
Nana Hima Dekyi, addressing the durbar, stressed that education was the key to unlocking the potentials of the future, but, unfortunately, the story, he said, had not been good for Dixcove in the past.
“Our education infrastructure is so poor and needs immediate intervention; a good number of our children still are out of the classroom and rather engage in economic activities to support their homes and so on.” That apart, he said, there were a few who were breaking the barriers and raising their heads.
These, he said, had to be celebrated and encouraged, hence, the launch of the Hima Dekyi Foundation as a vehicle to support those breaking barriers in education.
On tourism, Nana Hima Dekyi said Dixcove abounds in untapped potentials to be developed into a tourism hub. It has an amazingly beautiful coastline, serene landscape, a fort and host of other edifices which, when developed, could attract tourists from all around the world.
On health, the Omanhene mentioned that the only hospital that served the people of Dixcove needed a facelift. He said the hospital lacked, among others, a doctor’s bungalow, nurses’ quarters, while its mortuary was in a bad shape, to the extent that it had been closed down.
On his part, the President of the Western Regional House of Chiefs (WRHC), Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi III, who was the Chairman for the occasion, described the day as a merry making period, taking into cognisance how long the people of Upper Dixcove had longed to witness the beautiful Kundum Festival.
Ogyeahoho said, knowing Hima Dekyi, he had no doubt that he would live up to expectations in promoting education and development in his traditional area.