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One of the significant notes taken from the commemoration of the Asantehene’s 25th Anniversary at the Manhyia Palace Sunday, May 12, 2024, is how the respective chiefs who attend his durbar pay homage to the gold (not golden) stool.

The Akyempemhene, who is traditionally the Asantehene’s eldest son, for instance greets the stool with two people on his sides, whilst his waist is held during a handshake with the Asantehene. He is given that privilege as the first son of the King who is also the custodian of all the artefacts used to serve the Otumfuo.

As part of enlightening the public on the culture that is displayed during such durbars, a historian on GTV, Nana Nyarko, indicated that the Denkyirahene for instance, when paying homage to Otumfuo, weeps before he shakes hands with him.

The Battle of Feyiase was the decisive battle in the struggle that led to the Ashanti Empire replacing Denkyira as the dominant power among the Twi-speaking Akan people.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu I, led the Asantes to defeat Denkyira in the Asante-Denkyira war climaxed by the beheading of the Denkyirahene, Ntim Gyakari in 1701.

The Asantes, according to Nana Nyarko, seized the drums which belonged to the Denkyiras after their alliance against the regional hegemony sufficed by completely defeating them in the war.

He continued that whenever any Denkyirahene comes to Asante to pay homage to Otumfuo, the drums are played in memory of the late Ntim Gyakari, for the Denkyira to weep to mourn him, before shaking hands with the Otumfuo.

The Akwasidaekɛseɛ was marked with a rich display of culture in the Ashanti Regional capital, Kumasi, to mark the Asantehene’s 25th anniversary on the golden stool.

Major roads and principal streets within the metropolis were blocked to traffic as local and foreign dignitaries attended the occasion at the Manhyia Palace with heavy security.

There were drumming and dancing amidst firing of muskets as sub-chiefs in the Asante Kingdom arrived with their subjects to the event grounds.

The King, in all his royalty and elegance, rode in a palanquin from the Palace to ‘Dwabrem’ amidst the firing of muskets. The Golden Stool was on display at the durbar ground for the public to take a view.

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor, Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and other dignitaries also graced the occasion, as well as President Akufo-Addo and other members of government.

Over 40 foreign dignitaries, including ambassadors and high commissions, Prime Ministers, members from foreign missions among others, also attended the event for the commemoration which marked the highest point of the Asantehene, the ruler of the Ashanti Kingdom.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu II ascended the Golden Stool as the 16th Asantehene on April 26, 1999, after his elder brother, Otumfuo Opoku Ware II, and has since ruled the kingdom past all five Presidents under the Fourth Republican constitution of the Republic of Ghana.

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