Wednesday, 25 November 2009

NEWS FLASH: Bawku Strip-Naked Show: Minister Hails Soldiers Date: Tuesday, 24 November 2009

NEWS FLASH: Bawku Strip-Naked Show: Minister Hails Soldiers Date: Tuesday, 24 November 2009

By: By A.R. Gomda

A Minister of State at the Office of the President, Joseph Nii Laryea Afotey-Agbo, has defended soldiers who stripped two men naked in Bawku following the revelation of the sordid incident by a video footage yesterday, saying that the victims should count themselves lucky they were not even killed.
The victims have been identified as Rashid Abubakar who teaches at the Mustafiya Arabic/English School, and Justin Addo, also a teacher at the Methodist Junior Secondary School.
Hon. Afotey-Agbo, who was sworn in yesterday by President Atta Mills as a Minister of State at the Presidency, is also the Member of Parliament for Kpone/Katamanso in the Greater Accra Region.
Reacting to a question posed to him by Adabraka-based Hot FM yesterday, Nii Afotey-Agbo, popularly called ‘Lion’, maintained that the two were lucky because they were not shot by their captors.
He rhetorically asked his host, Adakabre, “What about those who were killed?” adding that the Regional Minister for the area, Mark Woyongo, had to crawl on the ground during the indiscriminate firing of firearms a few days before the victims were picked up by the military.
His host referred him to his disclosure that he is an expert at conflict resolution and asked what his take was on the recent stripping of two men naked in Bawku.
That was when he defended the soldiers’ action and sympathized with the Regional Minister who had to crawl on the ground when he visited the conflict zone three or so weeks ago, as the Bawku municipality was subjected to a spate of indiscriminate firing by individuals.
His reaction is the first to emanate from officialdom and fails to address the anomaly about the violation of the human rights of the two adults, who were stripped naked, in the presence of their students.
The two persons are still in the custody of the Police even as they require full medical attention, DAILY GUIDE has learnt.
In the video footage, Rashid Abubakar is the one whose hand is in P.O.P. having suffered a stray bullet wound earlier.
The wound was persistently hit at by the soldiers during their ordeal. He teaches at the Mustafiyah Arabic/English School in Bawku.
His colleague, Justin Addo, on the other hand teaches at the Methodist JSS. Information has it that they are being held in Bolgatanga, the Upper East Regional capital, and would soon make another appearance in court.
One of them was suspected by the soldiers of being behind an attempt to shoot a potato farmer who was working on his farm.
In the course of trying to flee, according to official reports, on a motorbike provided by his colleague, they were both arrested and subjected to the treatment which was captured in the video footage.
A search conducted on them did not yield any result, even though the security operatives said they found weapons on them.
One of them continuously pleaded with his aggressors, saying that he is a teacher but that did not deter them from continuing with the savagery.
One of them was said to have been marched to his school stark-naked.
The pupils, out of sympathy for the pitiable spectacle, could only exclaim, “Oh teacher!” So far, the military high command has not reacted to the story.
But Major General Augustine Blay, Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) earlier statement that an investigation had proved the story about the incident as untrue, boggled many minds when the pictures were presented to the public yesterday.
The CDS, who appeared to have harboured the story for sometime, was not charitable to the media, as he subtly castigated them for not sparing sometime to investigate the alleged action of the soldiers in Bawku.
He added that had they taken some pain to probe the subject, they would have found out that it was mendacious.
The Bawku Municipality and its surrounding environs are under the security of a detachment of the Ghana Army Airborne Force deployed from their Tamale base over 100 miles away.
Captain Frank Abrokwa, the Commander of the detachment, is very much despised by the non-Kusasi residents of the municipality.
The Mossis and Mamprusis on the other hand consider him as an impartial officer in the conflict which has pitched the Kusasis on one side against the Mamprusis, Mossis and others on another.
The age-long conflict has taken a dip in recent times and some allege that the fact that the Interior Minister, Cletus Avoka, and the Presidential Spokesman Mahama Ayariga, hail from the area, is inimical to the search for peace in the place.
Both persons have persistently denied that they are taking sides in the conflict, with the Minister in particular arguing that the bloodshed outdates his appointment as minister.
Various efforts at resolving the security challenge appeared to have remained useless in the face of the intermittent flaring of bloody skirmishes in the flashpoint.
Bawku is a border town and hosts traders from Burkina Faso and Togo, a feature which gave it a special economic status many years ago.
The conflict has robbed the town of this economical advantage, making it a shadow of its past.
THE END [Credit:]

The Reason Of The Bawku Conflict And Its Solution
By: Atubiga, Steve, (2008-01-04) [Credit:]

On behalf of the Kusasis in the United States, I am calling for peace and calm in the Bawku District I would like to assure all concerned parties that the leadership of the Kusasis will not stop at anything to ensure that the source of this conflict has been tackled and the needed solutions applied for peace and tranquility to prevail in the district.

During a recent visit of Nana Akuffo Addo, the NPP presidential candidate to the Bawku district, he did not pay the needed courtesy call to the Paramount Chief of the District, for the mere reason that he was not informed/ "educated" as to what the proper procedures are by the Mamprusis who received him. It is being alleged that the Mamprusis who think NPP is a tribalistic party do not recognize the paramount chief of the Bawku district, because he is a Kusasi and this is how this conflicted started.

There has been a cold war between the Kusasis and the Mamprusis for a while, just waiting for the opportune time to explode, so the events of Nana Akuffo-Addo's visit was the spark that started the fire.

At the time when the fight started, the Kusasis were celebrating their end of year festival as their traditional routine. The Mamprusis, instead of joining the Kusasis to celebrate the festival as settlers, rather had hooligans and thugs disrupt the on-going festivities. The rumour amongst the Kusasis from the Mamprusis is that Nana Akuffo-Addo is alleged to have said that if he comes to power he will destool the Kusasis and give the chieftancy to the Mamprusis; and so that is why the Mamprusis started misbehaving in the district.

If it is not true that Nana Akuffo-Addo made the alleged statement, then he should call a press conference to denounce the statement and assure the people of the District that if he is elected, he will be president for all Ghanaians no matter which tribe they belong to. That is the only way the Kusasis will lay down their arms.

I would also want the general public to know that, the government is aware that Bawku belongs to the Kusasis. As history has proven, the Mamprusis, who are in the minority with a population of about 2000; are settlers from Mamprusiland at Nalarigu and Gambaga who came to settle in the Bawku district during the time that the Busangas from Burkina Faso were invading Bawku for greener pastures. The Mamprusis were sent to Bawku during the rule of Na Gbewaa as soldiers to help the Kusasis fight the Busangas from invading Bawku. After the war, the Mamprusis settled in Bawku with the Kusasis; but now want to claim the land of the Kusasis as their own. This indeed, defeats the whole purpose of their being sent there to help the Kusasis win the battle in the first place.

The Bawku District comprises of the Moshis, Busangas, the Kusasis and other northern tribes, of which the Mamprusis form the minority amongst all the tribes who have come to settle on the Kusasis Land.

I am appealing to the government and Ghanaians as a whole, to make it clear to the Mamprusis that the whole of the Bawku District belongs to the Kusasis to avoid any conflicts that would arise and negatively impact the infrastructure and socio-economic development of the district as a whole.

I have also spoken with Nana Akuffo-Addo's aide, who has assured me that they will send a delegation to the Northern Region to resolve this issue.
About the writer:

*Stephen Atubiga, also known as, Alex Accolatse is the son of Fortunate Atubiga, the former member of parliament for Binduri Constituency and a nephew to the Paramount Chief of the Bawku District. Stephen Atubiga, who is based in Virginia, USA, is the Founder and President of the Eagle Express Shipping, Eagle General Construction; a multi-million dollar company and also the President of the Kusasi Youth Association in the United States of America. *

* **Contact Info for Steve Atubiga:*

*Cell: *571-722-4677

*Offic*e: 703-372-1974 / 703-372-19

News FLASH: Maame Dokono Trial Begins Date: Tuesday, 24 November 2009

CHESTER RONNA, the first witness in the trial of actress and talk show hostess Grace Omaboe, alias Maame Dokono, and one of her workers, in connection with the neglect of her Peace and Love Orphanage, yesterday told the court that she did not know her (Omaboe).
Chester, the Director of a children’s home at East Legon, said she had only heard of Maame Dokono but had never seen her before.
Evidence-in-chief ASP Kofi Blagodzi told an Accra Circuit Court presided over by Mrs. Georgina Mensah-Datsa that the witness said on January 13, 2009 she received a telephone call from two ladies who asked for directions to her orphanage.
She said the ladies came to her and asked if she could take two children from Peace and Love, but she declined saying she would take them only if the ladies had a letter of approval from the Department of Social Welfare.They came two days later with the letter.
The witness said when they first brought the children she was not at home, and when she arrived the diapers of the children were being changed. She said she realized one of the children, a six-month-old called Barrack, had passed bloody stool.
According to her, she realised that the child was still passing stool frequently and whenever he did so part of his anus came out and he cried a lot. She thus took the two children to the Police Hospital and saw a paediatrician, Dr. Awusi, who referred her to Dr. Amoah where it was revealed that they had been defiled.
The judge asked the worker from Peace and Love, Mary Anaglate, whether she had any questions for the witness, but she said she had none because she did not know the witness and was not a worker but someone who was also helped by Maame Dokono. The case has been adjourned to December 1 2009.
The two have pleaded not guilty to three counts of operating a home without a license, and exposing a child to harm. They pleaded not guilty to the offences, after which the trial judge granted them a GH¢30,000 bail with two sureties each.
ASP Kofi Blagodzi who narrated the events leading to the arrest of the accused persons to the courts said Omaboe, 61, is the proprietor of the orphanage, which was registered with the Department of Social Welfare in March 2005. Mr. Blagodzi said its license to operate expired on March 2006, after which it was not renewed by Maame Dokono, so from 2006 the NGO was unlicensed.
He said in 2004 a certain Nana Yaa Agyeman, who was the supervisor of the home, wrote to the National Commission on Children about the poor state of affairs at the home, but no action was taken on it.
The prosecutor was of the opinion that Omaboe failed to employ adequate number of persons to manage the home, adding that the children were underfed, malnourished and made to live in dark, poorly ventilated rooms.
ASP Blagodzi added that as a result of the darkness due to non-payment of electricity bills, the older children took advantage of the younger ones by sexually abusing them.
Explaining further, he told the court that the Maame Dokono on December 31, 2008 left for Holland leaving only GH¢50 for the upkeep of the home. The situation got out of hand, leading to complaints being made to the Social Welfare about shortage of food in the orphanage. They consequently sent an officer to review the situation.
Mr. Blagodzi continued that it was recommended that four children be evacuated immediately. Two of the children; Daadum Omaboe and Barrack Omaboe, who are two years and six months old respectively, were to be sent to other homes. They were thus sent to another orphanage called Beacon House where it was detected that the two kids had been sodomised.
Furthermore, he stated that during investigations it was found that some of the children under 12 years of age admitted to taking advantage of the darkness and lack of attention to defile the younger ones, including the two children named above.
He also noted that further investigations revealed that a certain Joseph Kobi Omaboe and Adom Omaboe were put in boiled water by a certain Daavi, leading to them to sustaining various degrees of injury. This led to the death of Joseph Kobi Omaboe on October 2006. The orphanage has since been shut down.


*****Horror!!! The idea that a six months old baby has been abused / sodomized regularly; left damaged [physically, mentally and emotionally], that this precious baby was changed by ‘HUMANBEINGS’ regularly –and no one alerted the authorities to the pain and suffering this child sustained in the so called care of this so called ‘children’s Home’ [I’m sure this isn’t an isolated case] –has shocked me to the core!! God help these children –and provide them with safe homes. I pray also that the truth will come out –and that the authorities will intervene. And that it will set of a ‘chain reaction’ –bringing the needs and welfare of abandoned, homeless and children in children’s homes [in Ghana] to the forefront –and cause debate and changes.

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Global Post discuss Fashion in Ghana

Title: Ghana fashion takes the catwalk [Designers aim to build international reputations for their stylish clothes.]
By Anna Boiko-Weyrauch — Special to GlobalPost
Published: October 14, 2009 06:18 ET
Updated: October 15, 2009 14:24 ET

ACCRA, Ghana — Calvin Klein, Armani and … Bayo Adegbe? African designers are working to make a name for themselves outside their countries, showing their collections around the world and bringing their unique styles to wider audiences. At Ghana Fashion Weekend, more than 30 designers from around Africa rolled out their collections, featuring vibrant prints, chunky accessories and traditionally inspired forms. It was the largest fashion event in Ghana and drew audience members from beyond the continent.

“I love wearing the African wear on the runway because everyone is watching to see, ‘What new design?’ ‘What are they going to do with this fabric?’ ‘What’s next?’ ” said Accra resident, Sonia Ibrahim, a part-time model who walked the runway for designer Ouedraogo Usman of Burkina Faso. She sported a ruffled cream gown with a leather bodice, raffia tasseled fan, enormous bangles and bone accents, and a woven wicker mask that obscured her face. “Most people don’t understand, ‘Why is her face covered?’ But it’s traditional wear. And [wearing it] was fun.”

Some designers are ambitious and would like to see Africa’s creativity capture the spotlight on runways around the world. They argue that both Africans and Westerners will look to the continent for the colors, shapes and textures that will form part of their newest innovations in fashion and the arts. Earlier this year, African inspirations found their way onto the runways of Louis Vuitton and Dior. “We have a lot of ideas that have not been tapped. We have a lot of things that have not been used,” said internationally recognized Nigerian designer, Bayo Adegbe, who runs the label Modela Couture. Adegbe’s designs have won him a number of awards in Nigeria and beyond, as well as an all-expenses-paid internship with a design house in Paris. At Ghana Fashion Weekend, a troupe of male models showed off his line of Western suits made from richly textured batik fabric and popular African prints, ranging from orange and yellow geometric designs, leopard spots and pictures of chickens.

Adegbe’s collection also includes sparkling gowns, shorts and tops covered in silver and pastel sequins. He wanted to replicate the natural pattern of fish scales — he even started sewing the clothes with real fish scales from a market in Lagos. Those never lost their fishy smell and shriveled over time, so now he relies on flashy plastic sequins instead to achieve the same effect.

But, more than just creating fancy couture clothing, designers like Adegbe see their role as a catalyst for job creation and economic development on the continent.
“It will help to put business on a lot of people’s tables,” Adegbe said. “The population is large in Africa. So if they are all buying clothes that are made in Africa, then that is good business for a lot of African designers.”

Already a number of independent designers have been able to employ themselves and a small workforce to sketch, cut and sew their collections. But they have trouble pushing their miniature operations to the next level. Adegbe says that there are no factories in Nigeria capable of mass-producing his pieces. Even though he’s had interest from European buyers, he can’t keep up with the sheer quantity of clothes they demand.

Although many designers start small, the organizers of Ghana Fashion Weekend are working for nothing less than a fashion revolution. They aim to change not only the way the rest of the world views fashion in Africa, but also how people at home relate to the industry. Although local tailors’ shops are common throughout Ghana, many Ghanaians just didn’t get the point of a fashion show. According to Ghana Fashion Weekend Exhibition Director, Kofi Essel, “When a lady moves on a catwalk they say, ‘What is wrong with this girl? [She] just wears a dress, turns off, shows everybody and then she goes away.’ They just didn’t understand why somebody should do that first of all.”

But the organizers are encouraged by the showing at this year’s show — and optimistic about the future of what they see as an annual event in the country. Even though there were technical difficulties with lights and sound from time to time during the event, on the last day, the auditorium was packed and the large crowd cheered for their homegrown models and designers.


Anthony Bourdain No Reservations – Ghana

*I have always said, –if you hate Ghana and Ghanaians –then you hate God .....xx

People of Ghana

The people of modern Ghana are generally divided into four main regional groupings, each of which shares a similar language and culture. The Mole-Dagbani of the Northern Region were the first to establish their approximate modern territory, migrating from the Lake Chad region in the thirteenth century to establish the Mamprusi kingdom at Gambaga. The area to the east of lake Volta is inhabited by the Ewe, fifteenth century migrants from eastern Nigeria. Ewe society is the least centralized of any in modern Ghana and each of the roughly 130 small Ewe chieftaincies is entirely autonomous. The other important grouping of the east is the Ga-Adangbe, made up of the Ga people of the Accra coastal plain and the Adangbe of Ada and Somanya. Like the Ewe, the Ga-Adangbe are originally from eastern Nigeria.
The most significant population group in modern Ghana, territorially and numerically is the Akan. The Akans of the southern and central part of the country embrace several dozen culturally similar and historically allied peoples, the best known of which are the Ashanti of the Kumasi area and the Fante of the central coast. The Akan comprise more than half of modern Ghana’s population and inhabit five of its ten administrative regions: Western, Central, Eastern, Ashanti and Brong-Ahafo. Although every Akan village has its own chief, political centralization into larger kingdoms has been a recurrent feature of Akan history, from the fourteenth century Bono kingdom of Techiman to recent entities such as Ashanti and Fante. The Akan are thought to have migrated to modern Ghana from the Sahel.

Fashion: Joe Casely-Hayford and John Lewis collaborate…..

“Joe Casely-Hayford for John Lewis will introduce my designs to a much broader audience……. I am excited by this unique collaboration which will create a new design statement and celebrate the best of British in a modern context.” Joe Casely-Hayford

John Lewis has teamed up with uber fashion designer Joe Casely-Hayford for the store’s first designer collaboration for men. Joe Casely-Hayford is famed for his bespoke suits –and has dressed celebrities like Bono, and bands such as The Clash and Take That. The “knowingly understated” collection [featuring original, concept clothing] will be in the shops early next year –and I can’t wait!!!! I will keep you posted….xx

Friday, 20 November 2009

Random : Wanlov the kubolor and friend dancing.....

I stumbled across this sweet clip and just had to share it. I don't know whom Wanlov the kubolor is dancing with -but they have warmed the cockles of my heart... God bless them. Enjoy...............x

The Spirit: DIVINE ROMANCE by Phil Wickham

The fullness of Your grace is here with me
The richness of Your beauty is all I see
The brightness of Your glory has arrived
In Your presence God, I’m completely satisfied

For You I sing I dance
Rejoice in this divine romance
Lift my heart and my hands
To show my love, to show my love

A deep, deep flood, an Ocean flows from You
Of deep, deep love, yeah its filling up the room
Your innocent blood, has washed my guilty life
In Your presence God I’m completely satisfied

****I cannot imagine a life full of stuff, –a life where I have it all, -a life where I’m ferried around town [where my feet doesn't touch the ground]. A life where I am celebrated like a mini God [surrounded by ‘yes people’] –but have no God. My goodness, -that would be a life full of desperate nothingness......a life of void. I love you Father God. Thank You xx

Fashion: Flawless By OheneBa

"Conventional High Street meets bold, inspired prints in Flawless by OheneBa. Created in 2007 by an inspired young female, who was bored with the lack of flexibility with her African clothes, the Flawless brand stands to provide clothing for the many young people who wish to be connected with their roots, but also maintain their individuality and style." Flawless By OheneBa

I’m loving this fabulous Collection by Philomena Adede Oheneba Kwao. Founded in 2007 -and made by first class tailors in Ghana –‘Flawless By OheneBa’ collection is funky, bold, and so on trend. I particularly love the inspired print dress with sweetheart neckline and bow detail -a must for any fashionista looking for funky investment pieces. For more information please visit:

Trade Events in 2010 [Ghana]

Student Opportunity: British Council Education UK Exhibition, in Ghana [12 to 16 February 2010]
Are you a student in Ghana? Do you wish to study in the UK? If this is you -why not check out Education UK Exhibition Ghana [12 to 16 February 2010].... This Exhibition will take place in both Accra [Accra International Conference Centre] and Kumasi [Miklin Hotel] -offering discerning students the opportunity to find out about: courses, universities and fees [remember -some universities offer financial help –so do enquire]...If you are a student -information on Education UK Exhibition Ghana is as follow:
Date: 12 to 13 February 2010
Location: International Conference Centre, Accra, Ghana.

Date: 16 February 2010
Location: Miklin Hotel, Kumasi, Ghana...
For more information please visit the British Council at:

Iyaba Expo 2010
Africa’s Premier Spa and Beauty Expo & Conference
Date: February 22-24, 2010
Location: Accra International Conference Center

Joy Bridal Fair
Bridal Beauty Expo
Date: June 25-28, 2010
Location: Accra International Conference Center

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Travel: Accompong in Jamaica

Known as a country within a country - Accompong [founded by our kromanti forefathers –who I believe were really Fanti people and not Ashanti –as is always reported] has no taxes, no police and hardly any crime –and has semi-independent town status in western Jamaica. I have plans to visit –and wanted to share its history and other FACTS with you…..Enjoy….xx

“In 1690 a large group of slaves in Clarendon, consisting mainly of Coromantees an extremely brave and warlike people from Africa’s Gold Coast, rebelled and escaped into the dense woods. Soon they would join forces with the Spanish-freed Maroons under the able leadership of one of their number named Cudjoe. We are told he was a thick necked, short, extremely squat man with a large lump of flesh upon his back. They say he was bear-like in appearance and often acted in a strange wild manner. Cudjoe, with the help of his two brothers Accompong and Johnny (in the West or Leeward side), and two sub-chiefs Quao and Cuffee (in the East or Windward side), began a campaign of murder and robbery known to history as the First Maroon War. Disguised from head to foot with leaves and cunningly concealed, the Maroons chose to attack from ambush. This form of warfare along with their skill in woodcraft and familiarity with the untracked forests along with their legendary skill as marksman baffled and confounded those sent to fight them. Keen-eyed lookouts would spot an approaching force long before their arrival and spread the warning through the abeng horn, a kind of bugle made from a cow’s horn. Especially skilled horn blowers could use particular calls to summon each member of their party from long distances as if they were face-to-face. The English forces suffered huge losses both from the sharp shooting Maroons and the tropical diseases that were very common at that time.
In 1734 Captain Stoddart lead a successful attack on Nanny Town (named for a Maroon Chieftainess) aided by Mosquito Coast Indians and tracking dogs. The town was completely leveled and to this day is believed haunted by the ghosts of those who died in that battle. Cudjoe, finding himself less secure, moved further into the Trelawny Cockpits and those that escaped the battle moved even further into the Cockpits to establish a new village site. The fighting soon resumed. With a slave to owner ratio of 14:1 and successful new raids on plantations occurring more frequently, the Assembly was sufficiently alarmed to vote the necessary funds for a large scale campaign against the Maroons. The situation was getting desperate for the Maroons as their provision grounds were destroyed and they were forced into smaller areas. The alternative of surrender over starvation was becoming a real option..but the government did not know this. Shortly after a bloody massacre of English soldiers by a band of Maroons led by Cudjoe from a hiding spot in a cave to be later dubbed the Peace Cave, the King of England in 1738 commissioned Colonel Guthrie to seek out Cudjoe and offer him favorable terms of peace.

On January 6th 1738, Colonel Guthrie and Colonel Cudjoe exchanged hats as a sign of friendship and, after some discussion; the treaty was agreed to under a big cotton tree then called Cudjoe’s tree and today called the Kindah One Family tree. By its terms the Maroons were granted full freedom and liberty, given 1,500 acres of land and the right to hunt wild pig anywhere except within a 3 mile limit of a town or plantation. Cudjoe was appointed Chief Commander in Trelawny Town and his successors in order beginning with Accompong and Johnny. The Chief Commander or Colonel as he is called today is empowered to inflict any punishment he thinks proper for crimes committed by his people except those requiring the death sentence when then they are handed over to a justice of the peace. The Maroons had to agree to end all hostilities, receive no more runaway slaves and further agreed to help recapture them for a reward when the runaways were returned to their owners. Finally the Maroons had to agree to suppress any local uprising or foreign invasion. The following year a similar treaty was agreed to and signed with Quao, Chief of the Windward Maroons in what is called Moore Town today. The First Maroon War had officially ended and more than 50 years of peace ensued. Two more conflicts were later dubbed the Second Maroon War and the Third Maroon War but neither of these involved the Accompong Town Maroons. They remained neutral in both conflicts and remain so today.

Not all historical accounts written by Western scholars agree with the Maroon Historians versions of those same events. One such example is the signing of the Peace Treaty ending the First Maroon War. No mention of the Peace Cave as the official site of the treaty signing can be found in history textbooks but Maroon Historians insist that Colonel Guthrie and Colonel Cudjoe signed the Peace Treaty in a blood brother ceremony within it’s confines. Location of that original Peace Treaty is hard to pin down as the Maroon Historians only say a trusted Maroon elder is the keeper of this valuable document and keeping its location secret is a top priority. Accompong Town is a relatively new settlement as the original village Old Town where Cudjoe is buried was abandoned in favor of higher ground when Accompong, his brother, took over leadership of the Maroons. This Old Town is considered sacred ground today and a secret ceremony is performed there each January 6th when the signing of the Peace Treaty is celebrated. The position of Colonel was once a lifetime position but now has been modified to a 5 year elected position.
In the 263 years since the Peace Treaty was signed, the Accompong Maroons have had only 1 unfortunate incidence of a capital crime requiring the intervention of a justice of the peace making this a truly remarkable place. There are no Jamaican Police in Accompong and the substation in Maggotty is on-call if needed but that has never been necessary as the Maroons are quite capable of policing themselves. There are no ground-based telephones in Accompong. Pipe water is relatively new and not in all areas of the community. Electricity has been available for a number of years but not in all homes. The roads to Accompong Town are in dire need of repair and only local professional drivers or vehicles built for off-road terrain should attempt to drive there. Some new Guest Houses have been constructed as of late and overnight, as well as Day Visits by tourists, are roundly encouraged by the Maroon Council and community members.

The future of Accompong and its residents is in question. No jobs in the community mean that many Maroons have to go past the gate to get employment. The Government of Jamaica along with the Tourist Product Development Company is currently trying to help remedy this situation. Efforts to preserve the history, folklore, music and craft making skills have been ongoing as well as training the youth to carry on the proud traditions is being instituted. Approximately 500 residents live in Accompong Town or in the surrounding Cockpit Country. Another possible 5,000 live around Jamaica and still another 10,000 or more are scattered in foreign countries like Canada, the US and Great Britain. However, as they say, once a Maroon, always a Maroon! [Credit: Bill Evans at:]

Further information - Maroons in St. Elizabeth
Accompong is an historical Maroon village in the parish of St. Elizabeth, Jamaica. It is named after the Maroon leader, Accompong, brother of Quao, Cudjoe (or Kojo), Cuffy and Nanny, also Maroon leaders from the Ashanti family of Ghana. The isolated area was a refuge first for the Tainos (Arawaks) from the Spanish and then for the Maroons, (runaway slaves), from the British. The runaway slaves were called Maroons, from the Spanish word cimmarron, meaning wild or untamed. The rebel slaves and their descendants fought the colonizers – threatening the profitable sugar industry by raiding plantations, killing white militia men and freeing slaves. They captured more lands from plantation holders to create a sacred landscape of what was left to them by colonial treaty. They won autonomy from the British, consolidated by a Treaty signed at Peace Cave in 1739 – although one requirement was to police other runaway slaves. When war broke out again in The Maroon War of 1795, the Accompong Maroons remained neutral and were left alone by the British. All other Maroon settlements were destroyed – surviving Trelawney Maroons were deported to Nova Scotia, Canada in 1796 and those who survived the brutal winters there were sent to Freetown, Sierra Leone, Africa. Once there, these Maroons were used to quell an uprising against the Sierra Leone Company by the Black settlers from Britain - many of whom were Black Loyalists in the American War of Independence (1775-1783), former slaves promised their freedom for supporting the British soldiers in America. Every January 6, (Cudjoe's birthday), descendants and friends of the Maroons celebrate the Treaty of 1739 at a festival in Accompong, St. Elizabeth, Jamaica. [Credit:]

Kramanti Today….
The work of Alleyne (1988, p. 122), in keeping with previous work on the subject, identifies the language variety labeled Kramanti by the Maroons of Jamaica as very closely related to the Akan dialect/language cluster of West Africa. The best known language within this cluster is Twi-Asante. The label ‘Kramanti’ owes its origin to a major slaving port on the Gold Coast, modern day Ghana, which was known to the Europeans as Coromantyn. This port was located in the Akan-speaking area of West Africa and would, therefore, have been a source for large numbers of slaves of Akan ethnic and linguistic background. In many parts of the Americas, including Suriname, Guyana and Carriacou, Coromantee and similar labels have been used for ethnic, linguistic and cultural groups with what appear to be Akan origins. Alleyne (1988, pp. 122) suggests that people of Akan linguistic and cultural origin were dominant in the early years of plantation slavery in Jamaica, both on the plantations and amongst the runaway Maroons. Not surprisingly, therefore, it is an Akan variety, Kramanti, that has endured as a form of African linguistic heritage dating back to the very earliest days of plantation slavery in Jamaica.

The language is reported by Harris (1994, p. 39) to still have been spoken ‘freely’ in Moore Town up to the early 1930s. Kramanti was, he claims, used alongside an archaic variety of English lexicon Creole styled in the literature as ‘Maroon Spirit Language’ (MSL). This language is, however, referred to by its speakers as Deep Patwa. Even though, in the 1930s, an English Creole vernacular was the most common means of communication within the community, Kramanti was used in preference to Creole at certain times. These included at Christmas time which was a prolonged period of merriment, and during the frequent stagings of the Kramanti Play. The Play, a ceremony involving the summoning of the ancestors, involves the use of Deep Patwa (Maroon Spirit Language) for communicating with the more recently dead, Jamaica born ancestors. Kramanti is employed for communication with the earliest Maroon ancestors, many of whom were born in Africa (Bilby 1983, p.38).
There is considerable discussion in the literature as to whether Kramanti can be viewed as a dead language. In one sense it is. It is a language used for communicating with the spirits of the dead. However, this is in a culture in which the dead, though absent in material form, are always present in spirit. Speaking of them is regarded as invoking their presence. This is a language used by the living as part of their normal daily communication acts. It is simply that, within the culture, normal communication networks include the dead. In this latter sense, Kramanti is a living language.

The other issue is that of the level of competence which users of Kramanti actually have. Bilby (1983, p. 38) suggests that Kramanti ‘… is not a functioning language, but rather a highly fragmentary ritual “language” consisting of a number of set phrases and expressions’. Alleyne (1988) takes only a marginally more optimistic view. He comments that though Kramanti is dying, it is not dead. He notes that the language is hardly every used in ordinary everyday contexts, but that ‘Scott’s Hall and Moore Town Maroons can carry on conversations in the old language on request, but that they use fixed and stylized expressions, and all creativity is lost’ (Alleyne 1988, pp. 126-7). This is supported by Bilby (1994). Bilby concedes that the no living Maroon retains it as a fully functioning language able to express an limitless number of ideas but nevertheless suggests that a minority of Maroons ‘… can provide English glosses for a large number of words and expressions and can communicate a wide variety of messages with Kromanti’ (Bilby 1994, p. 77).

Language Samples
Kramanti Akan (Twi-Asante)
paki apaki ‘small calabash’
sènsè asense ‘type of fowl’
kamfo nkamfo ‘type of yam’
afana afana ‘machete’
abukani abukani ‘cow’
anansi anansi ‘spider’
aprako prako ‘pig’
awisa wisa ‘pepper’
obroni oburoni ‘European, white person’
obroni o ko oburoni o ko ‘the white man has come’

The examples above show cases where Kramanti has lost the noun class prefixes, a-, o- and n-, by comparison with its Twi-Asante equivalents. We also see cases where these prefixes have been retained in both Kramanti and Twi-Asante. There are, as well, cases where it is Kramanti that has retained the historical noun class prefixes as in aprako and awisa, above. [Credit: Hubert Devonish Dept. of Language, Linguistics & Philosophy, University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica]

***There is so much more to read about Jamaica –and the part Ghanaians played –please Google –and also Google Surinam…….xx

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Her Excellency, Mrs Ernestina Naadu Mills -First Lady of Ghana [& Project C.U.R.E.]

I was doing some research when I stumbled across this wonderful clip -featuring our lovely First Lady, Her Excellency, Mrs. Ernestina Naadu Mills – delivering a [keynote] speech at Project C.U.R.E's First Ladies' Luncheon. I have also added another film clip –which gives more insight into the workings of Project C.U.R.E…

First Lady of Ghana Ernestina Naadu Mills delivers keynote address at Project C.U.R.E's First Ladies' Luncheon from MetroAfrican on Vimeo.

In the film clip below you will find more information about Project C.U.R.E.'s mission and the volunteers and donors who make its work possible. This video highlights the organization's work providing medical supplies and equipment to hospitals and clinics in Ghana, the country represented by First Lady Mrs. Ernestina Naadu Mills at Project C.U.R.E.'s fourth-annual First Ladies' Luncheon. The luncheon, sponsored by MillerCoors as part of its ongoing commitment to volunteerism and community involvement, helped to raise enough money to send more than $2.5 million in medical supplies and equipment to people in need in Ghana.

For more information about Project C.U.R.E. or to donate please visit:
Facts: *Her Excellency, Mrs Ernestina Naadu Mills, First Lady of Ghana is a director of education –and a trained marriage counsellor. …..The former second lady-turned-first lady is also a dog-lover [who has kept cross-bred Alsatians]. The couple have one son, Sam Kofi Atta Mills. [Credit:]

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Models & Event Management: Chozen Models

Chozen Models and Event Management is one of the newest and fastest growing modeling agencies in Accra, Ghana. With locations in Toronto, Canada, its Director hopes to develop the Accra market and ensure the models are prepared for the international market.

*Chozen Models is a new model agency and Event Management company -based in Ghana and Canada. They provide models for the usual [castings, editorial, advertising campaigns, runway, film, television, music video appearances, Promotions, guest appearances etc] -plus Event Management services [including: pageant, fashion shows, company/album/movie launch parties etc]. For more information please visit:

The HighLife: Citizen Kofi

I can’t wait to touch down in Ghana and explore... Of course there are many places to visit –but I’m particularly looking forward to ‘doing-my-thing’ at Citizen Kofi [the hottest nightclub in Africa]. Just feast your eyes on Accra’s latest nightclub....its sooo hot.

p.s I think that Citizen would make the perfect location for editorials or fashion shoots -don't you?