Otumfuo Osei Tutu II
ALL ACTIVITIES at Berekum, especially traffic flow, came to a standstill yesterday, when the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, visited the area.
The Asante Monarch was at Berekum to mourn the deceased Berekum Paramount Chief, Nana Amankona Diawuo, who passed on some months ago.
Otumfuo hardly attends funerals, but whenever he makes an appearance at a funeral, he is accompanied by a sea of mourners.
Yesterday was no different as Otumfuo was accompanied by scores of mourners, including some prominent paramount chiefs and other dignitaries.
Right from the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi, the Ashanti Regional capital, the Asante King’s convoy of flashy cars caused massive vehicular traffic on the road to Berekum.
At Berekum, news of Asantehene’s presence in the town also sparked joy among the local people, some of whom were so eager to catch a glimpse of their overlord for the first time.
Otumfuo was carried in a palanquin and surrounded by a sizable number of mourners, who sang dirges as they majestically marched him to the funeral grounds.
Again, the Asantehene’s entourage caused human traffic, as virtually all available places leading to the funeral grounds was covered by people.
Interestingly, some of the local people, who were determined to see Otumfuo for the first time, had to risk their lives by climbing trees to enable them see the Asante Monarch.
Others also had to stand on top of storey buildings, as they were ready to do everything humanly possible in order to set their eyes on the 16th occupant of the Golden Stool.
The Asantehene, who was in a sad mood as he was mourning one of the top paramount chiefs under his jurisdiction, was seen singing war songs, amid dancing.
Some of the local people, who spoke to the paper, expressed extreme joy that they have at least set their eyes on the leader of the Asante Kingdom for the first time.
They also expressed their profound gratitude to the Asantehene for taking time out of his tight schedule to visit Berekum to mourn the departed Berekum Paramount Chief.
FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Berekum