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Historian traces source of Ashanti-Akyem rivalry; lauds Otumfuo visit to Okyeman

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A monarchical historian is blaming politicians from the pre-colonial era for pitching Ashantis against the Akyems.

Osei-Bonsu Sarfo Kantanka says the visit of the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II to Okyeman is a step to reconcile the two powerful traditional rulers.

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He believes the visit will also shame politicians who have sown seeds of discord between the two rulers.

“In 1742 when the Ashanti waged the war against the Akyem by the end of the war,  Asantehene Opoku Ware I had married from Akyem. Asantehene Osei Tutu II has married from Akyem.

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He added: “Today, both have seen that they have to reconcile to put the politicians to shame.”

Read: PHOTOS: KNUST SRC petitions Akufo Addo and Otumfuo over halls conversion

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The comments come as Otumfuo Osei Tutu II makes a historic visit to the Eastern Region monarchy on Thursday.

Asantehene will be the special guest of honour at a durbar to mark the 75th anniversary of the late Okyehene, Sir  Ofori Atta at a durbar to be hosted by Okyehene, Osagefo Amoatia Ofori Panin at Kyebi on Thursday.

Speaking exclusively to Joy News’  Ohemeng Tawiah ahead of Asantehene’s visit, Mr. Osei-Bonsu said the visit should reconcile the two people through their leadership.

“That is why it is a major occasion, a major historical event; something to be glorified. Now that Akyem Abuakwa has extended an invitation to the King of Ashanti and he is also going as a brother, we think it should end there. No politician should ever succeed in playing Akyem against Asante anywhere, anytime, any day, any longer,” he said.

Read: BOST Board introduces new MD to Otumfuo

According to  Mr. Osei-Bonsu, pre-colonial politicians such as Captain George Maclean, Commander Hill also pitched Ashantis against the Akyem and other coastal states.

This led to the shooting to death of the killing of Opemsuo Osei Tutu II while crossing River Pra in 1717 in a war with the Akyems.

Britain, Netherland, Denmark for instance, planned and executed a war between coastal towns on one side and Ashantis leading to the defeat of the former in 1826.

The Ashantis who were then seeking total control over trading activities at the coast saw their dominance cut in the Battle of Katamanso.

It was on the back of this war that the 1831 Treaty was drafted after Captain George Maclean had organized all coastal states, one time enemies to Ashantis into what then became known as Gold Coast to sign the treaty in 1831 with Asantehene Osei Yaw Akoto.

Read: You can’t frustrate my relationship with Otumfuo – Okyenhene to detractors

This was to ensure the Asante Kingdom does not stretch forth beyond the River Pra and also to keep peace with all parties involved in the agreement.

Another pact, the Bond of 1844 at Adansi Fomena supervised by then-governor Commander Hill who succeeded Captain Maclean, a merchant, was signed with between Fante chiefs. This allowed the British to usurp judicial authority from African courts, among others.

Akyem-Abuakwa, Akyem-Bosome and Akyem-Kotoku have one way or the other helped and supported opponents such as Denkyira fight the Ashanti Kingdom.

That notwithstanding, Mr Osei-Bonsu says that does not make Akyems and Asantes rivals. He insists the two tribes are brothers since they are all from one maternal grandparent.

Read: We ‘threw’ dying Amissah-Arthur in a pick-up bucket; there was no ambulance – Okyehene

“The people they claim are rival to Ashanti are brothers to Ashanti. Ejisu, Offinso and Abuakwa-they all hail from one maternal grandparent, Nana Dokua from Akyem Abuakwa.

“Under Nana Dokua is where we had Ejisu, Offinso and Abuakwa. They were all in Adansi Akrofrom. Then Abuakwa moved to Akorikeri and then from Akorikeri moved to Banso and from Banso moved to Abuakwa. They have always collaborated as brothers,” he explained.

Source: myjoyonline.com


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