Sun, May

File Image: Launch of 2017 Ahanta festival. Photo credit- Ghanabusinessnews

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  • Ahanta is the land between Pra and Ankobra rivers and the only festival celebrated by the Ahantas has always been and will forever remain KUNDUM.

Written By Ahanta Apemenyimheneba Kwofie III - Once again, our most cherished KUNDUM festival is fast approaching, and we the true sons of Ahanta (Ayinda) are hopeful that harvest will be bountiful because that is all that KUNDUM, the traditional festival of Ahanta people stands for. It is our cultural heritage bequeathed to us through "the blood and toil" of our forefathers and so, it must be guarded jealously with pride, dignity, respect and honour.

There is no time to be an Ahanta than during the KUNDUM celebrations and sooner than later, we will hear the sounds of the drums calling every Ahanta far and near to come home and let's dance the ABISA. It is a period of self-control and comportment lest your name is used to compose a song for us to dance the ABISA with, should you involve yourself in some criminal or immoral acts, so it is a festival which serves as a check on criminal and immoral behaviours.

Ahanta is the land between Pra and Ankobra rivers and the only festival celebrated by the Ahantas has always been and will forever remain KUNDUM. It is because of this divisive tendencies that a once beautiful, mighty and powerful Kingdom ruled by great kings of Ahanta has been torn apart and now remain separate paramountcies with weaker fronts. Today there is nothing to write home about Ahanta because of some self-styled persons who still want our beautiful KUNDUM to be known as KUNTUM.

KUNDUM simply means bumper harvest where everybody eats to his or her satisfaction after long periods of hunger. It is an Ahanta festival of harvest which represents wealth, prosperity and good health for all Ahanta people, far and near. It marks the end of an Ahanta calendar and, it also represents new beginnings and hope for all Ahanta people.

 It's a period where all Ahantas reconcile and bury their differences but unfortunately for us the current generation, even the name of the festival is tearing us apart further. How sad? Instead of marshalling our fronts and mobilising our scarce resources in unity to become a force to reckon with in present day Ghana where the Ahanta personality is subliming into the thin air, there are always some quarters pulling Ahanta behind.

Per Ahanta beliefs, customs and practices, KUNDUM again represent spiritual cleansing and a period where the land is purged from all evil forces, calamities and misfortunes that are likely to befall Ahantas in the course of the year. It's one such festival that connects the Ahanta to the past, present and future with renewed spirits, new hopes and aspirations.

Today, the Ahanta does not only farm and go to fishing as it used to be in the olden days but is also found in other sectors of the Ghanaian economy contributing his or her quota to the growth and development of Ghana. In times like these as the KUNDUM but not KUNTUM comes, may the Ahanta find success, fulfilment and blessings with whatever his or her hands find. May the Ahanta receive all the blessings that comes with the KUNDUM and remain more hopeful for the years ahead.

In times like these that the culture of Ahantas, including our language is on the verge of fading out on our own land, particularly Sekondi-Takoradi and its environs, some of us still want to burn the candle of hope aloft and correct all the wrong impression about Ahanta in general and KUNDUM in particular. We want to say authoritatively that there is nothing called KUNTUM but rather, the festival of Ahanta people since the beginning of times is KUNDUM. No amount of cultural misconception and misrepresentation can change the name of this great festival of ours to KUNTUM.

It has never been KUNTUM but rather KUNDUM and please note the difference that correct spelling of the festival of Ahantas end with "D" and not "T" as it is currently being purported somewhere. Let's assume that KUNTUM is a wrong spelling and an erroneous impression that must be corrected before it further diltutes and corrupts the little pride we have left as Ahanta people, and that which represents the embodiment of all the Ahanta people is KUNDUM.

Ahanta is a pride for only those of us who know our worth as people. It is heroism for those of us who know the conquering exploits of our forefathers and torchbearers. It is legendary for those of us who know the Ahanta story and how our forefathers resisted oppression and suppression to the point of death and to us, the present generation, it is a new beginning.

Yes! The Ahanta has a story and it must be said rightly that Ahantas celebrate KUNDUM but not KUNTUM. The so called KUNTUM has no connection to Ahanta and will forever remain a figment of cultural propagandists who want to twist and turn our story for their own parochial interests. We know the agenda they are driving at and that is to say they and their descendants are not Ahantas in the near future but that is not a worry to some of us because we would want to remain Ahantas even if all others deny themselves.

Today Ahanta is in desolation because of parochial interests and to such people there is nothing wrong if they twist and turn our story to call our festival KUNTUM. They see nothing wrong with that, but we see everything wrong with it and I repeat it once again that it's KUNDUM and not KUNTUM

We know our story so we authoritatively say it's KUNDUM and not KUNTUM.

"Kundu wo mi" - eat to your satisfaction and it's almost here with us once again.

Ahanta Apemenyimheneba Kwofie III

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