Danger is looming at Asebu Ekroful, a predominantly farming community in the Central Region, following a fierce attack on the chief’s palace by some angry people.
According to sources, the mob accused the chief and the head of his family, Ebusuapanyin Etsii of stealing gold in the early hours of Monday, May 17, 2020.
Following this allegation, the angry mob allegedly stormed the palace, while Nana Andzie Bofo and his elders were having a crunch meeting the next day, beat them and vandalised the palace.
Pieces of information gathered by The Chronicle indicated that about seven months ago, a man who is believed to be mentally challenged attacked and destroyed the shrine, ‘Posuban’, in the town.
After the destruction, his father was said to have paid for the necessary rites to purify the shrine which was done by the Asafo Company and their priests and priestesses.
However, a self-made ‘Mallam’ was said to have visited the community and informed the elders that the ‘gods’ were not happy with the reconstruction work that was done after the destruction. In the process, he was said to have asked for some items to enable him to perform what he claimed to be more pleasing rituals that would be acceptable to the angry gods of the town.
According to MrEtsii, the Ebusuapanyin of the Royal Nsona family, the Mallam convinced them that failure to perform his (Mallam) intended ritual would lead to a catastrophic curse on the town.
I became very alarmed by this assertion so I quickly communicated to our Chief, Nana AndzieBofo IX.
I explained everything to him and pleaded with him to agree so that we can avert any calamity,” he told The Chronicle
“After a series of consultations, Nana AndzieBofo consented and gave us the go ahead to ensure that the rituals were done, if it is actually meant to cleanse the entire community,”he added.
It must be explained here that the Chief, Nana AndzieBofo does not reside at Ekroful, though a supreme court ruling has declared him as chief after a protracted litigation and he is recognised as such by the Asebu traditional council.
EbusuapanyinEtsii told The Chronicle that the Asafo Company was duly informed and deeply involved in the decision-making process so they both fixed a date to have the rituals performed. “We settled on the midnight of Monday May 17 to perform the ritual and got the Mallam informed accordingly, who also agreed, so we were ready to get everything down once and for all,” he explained.
While they were at the location performing their rites, he said they were attacked and prevented from going ahead by one Mr Kofi Ntsen, who forcefully stopped them and ceased their implements.
“This Kofi Ntsen, is the Okyeame to Ebusuapanyin Kweku Mensah, the head of the Adwenadze family of Ekroful who have been going round claiming to be the royals of the town,”he added.
Following the unwarranted attack, he said, the whole process was abruptly aborted and the Mallam fled the scene for fear of being attacked by the people. It was further gathered that at the same dawn, the Asafo drum, ‘AsafoKyen’, which has its own significance and signifies great deal of importance, was beaten in the town
According to information gathered, the situation created huge discrepancy and discontent among the people, especially the youth, as some supported the move while others were angered.
Nana AndzieBofo’s narrative
In an interview with The Chronicle, he alleged that he was severely assaulted by what he calledthugs that stormed his palace on Tuesday, May 18, 2021 when he visited the town.
Giving an account of why he was allegedly beaten by the thugs, this is what he said: “I was invited to go and speak with elders about what happened on the dawn of Monday. The meeting was meant to holistically look into what happened the previous night, being the intended rituals and the attack on Ebusuapanyin and the way forward”.
However, he said, as soon as he arrived in the morning, upon invitation by some of the Asafochiefs in the town, one Kyeame KofiNtsen made an announcement on a local information centre that he had arrived and so the people should gather.
While at the meeting with some of the Asafo chiefs, including KwesiAmoasi, KwakuQuainu, Moon Die and Kwame Assim, they heard a loud noise froma crowd advancing towards the palace.
He further narrated: “My Asafohenfo, who were present, stepped out to control the crowd but they kept coming, amidst shouting and chanting of war songs and throwing of stones.
“I heard one person mention my name and said I will not move back to Asebu because he will shoot at me. Everything was clear that I was going to die because I can’t run or fight at my present age,” said AndzieBofo
He stated that he managed to escape into a secret room within the palace, where he sought refuge from the alleged rampaging crowd, who had already subjected his Ebusuapanyin to severe beatings.
“My hiding in the room was shot-lived because they suddenly pounced on me and started beating me as if I was a wanted armed robber,” he added.
Narrating his ordeal, he explained that but for the intervention of one Sofohen Kwame Mensah, who came to his rescue, the attackers would have killed him.
“They held my neck and dragged me on the floor with an aim of getting me out of the palace so that they can do whatever they want to do to me”.
By divine intervention, he said, “Safohen Kwame Mensah, from nowhere came to save me and I saw him hit the hand that was holding my neck and the rest of them ran away. They took an amount of two hundred cedis from my pocket and also made away with a new phone worth about GH?900, which was given to me recently,” he alleged.
Nana Bofo bitterly complained that some of the attackers violently removed his sandals and threw them away, claiming others also held his EbusuapanyinEtsii and Kwesi Nyame hostage, as they gave them a beating of their lives.
At this point, he said, he rang the Omanhen of the Asebu Traditional Area and told him about what had happened to him while he was still at the palace. A team of police officers, he said, came to rescue him and took him away to the police station, where he was issued with a medical form to go to the hospital.
When The Chronicle visited Ebusuapanyin Kweku Mensah of the Adwenadze family, whose name was mentioned as the main brain behind the attack, he declined to comment.
He said: “We have reported to the police and our statements were taken, so my lawyer has advised us not to talk on this matter for now”.
Upon a visit to the palace, it was noted that several plastic chairs were allegedly broken by the invaders, while some of roofing sheets were also broken .The situation appeared to have created huge tension in the town, because it was rumoured that some people who are loyal to the chief were planning a reprisal attack.
An old man, who only gave his identity as Opanyin Mensah, toldThe Chroniclethat the regional Security Council must see the issue as one that could mar the peace of the town and make efforts to avert any reprisal.Read Full Story