Nzemas climax Kundum festival with fanfare
This year’s Kundum festival celebrated by the people of Lower and Upper Axim in the Nzema East Municipality of the Western Region have been climaxed with a beach party.
The festival which is celebrated by the Ahantas and Nzema people of the Western Region, is an occasion to render Thanksgiving to God for the abundance of food at the end of the harvest period.
The week-long festival saw activities such as clean up exercise, marathon race, Miss Kundum pageant, cooking competition, street carnival jam, beach soccer, grand durbar and a thanksgiving service.
This year's celebration was on the theme, "Promoting Security in our Communities; the role of society and the Traditional Authorities".
On Monday, September 4, 2018, the Paramount Chief of Lower Axim Traditional Council, Awulea Attibrukusu III led some sub-chiefs and his subjects to clean the principal streets within the community.
The Inter-District Beach Soccer Kundum Cup was organized on Tuesday under the sponsorship of Tullow Ghana.
The festival brought together people from far and near.
President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and government functionaries graced the grand durbar which attracted over 1000 people.
Addressing the durbar on Sunday, September 9, 2018, the Paramount Chief of Lower Axim, Awulea Attibrukusu III thanked God for granting them the opportunity to climax the festival.
"Indeed, today marks a special day for all of us gathered here to witness another climax of the Kundum celebration of the Chiefs and people of Axim; and wish to thank the Almighty God for granting us this opportunity," he stated.
He expressed profound gratitude to President Akufo-Addo and his entourage for honouring their invitation to climax the 2018 Kundum festival with them.
He used the occasion to laud President Akufo-Addo for appointing two people from the area to be part of his government thus, Catherine Afeku as the Minister for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts and Eva Esselba Mends as Director of Budget at Ministry of Finance.
"Indeed we are proud of our daughters' appointment to these high offices," he stated.
He explained that the theme for the celebration seeks to focus on the security concerns in our society as well as address the basic needs of security agencies.
He added that security is increasingly paramount to every society since their involvement seeks to safeguard lives and properties in their society.
He, therefore, appealed to the government as a matter of urgency to support the community to rehabilitate the Axim Police bungalow, which has been abandoned for the past 46 years.
Awulea used the occasion to thank President Akufo-Addo for the introduction and implementation of the Free SHS flagship program to help parents and guardians across the country, especially those in the rural communities.
"We would like to thank you for the introduction of Free SHS system to help parents and guardians across the country especially those in rural areas, Mr. President you always keep promises and when you pledge, you fulfil. You said you were going to bring us Free SHS, and you have fulfilled that. We thank you.”
He continued, "Mr. President, let me on behalf of the people of Axim use this occasion to extend our heartfelt appreciation to you for the ongoing projects in Axim, the Sports complex and the preparation towards the construction of the sea defence wall".
He added that if completed, the sea defence wall will curtail the inconveniences that his subjects have been encountering for close to two decades due to the sea erosion.
Awulea urged President Akufo-Addo to complete the construction of the Axim township roads started by former President John Agyekum Kufuor and former President John Mahama to befit the status the area as Municipal Assembly.
He acknowledged the MP for the area who is also the Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Catherine Afeku for her efforts to bring an end to open defecation in the Municipality by constructing toilet facilities in some of the communities.
The President, Nana Akufo-Addo who was the special guest of honour pledged government’s commitment to construct the sea defence wall to save lives and properties.
He hinted that the Gwira roads of the Municipality would be factored into the 2019 budget for the first time in the history of the country's politics.
The move forms part of measures to assist predominantly cocoa farmers to easily cart their cocoa pods to the produce buying centre.
He also declared government’s intention to establish a cocoa depot in Gwira Aiyinasi in the Municipality.
He revealed that last academic year over 1,200 students in the Nzema East Municipality had the opportunity to enjoy the Free SHS programme, adding that, this year the number would be increased.
He used the occasion to inform the gathering that the MP for the area, Catherine Afeku was hardworking MP and said through her support, the NPP government is constructing a Multi-Purpose Sports Complex at Axim as well as a Driver and Licensing Authority (DVLA) office near Axim.
The President appealed to the good people of Evalue-Adjomoro Gwira Constituency to retain Catherine Afeku as their MP in 2020 for massive developments.
On her part, Catherine Afeku expressed her profound appreciation to President Akufo-Addo for honouring their invitation to celebrate the Kundum festival with them as a first sitting President.
She also thanked the chiefs and people for organising such a memorable celebration.
She urged the gathering especially her constituents to live in peace and unity whilst reaffirming government’s commitment to construct the Axim township roads for the people.
On the issue of the cocoa depot, she said it will give a facelift to the constituency and also motivate the government to construct some cocoa roads in the area.
She told the gathering to ignore the propaganda her political opponents were peddling in the area and urged them to remain resolute and support the Akufo-Addo led administration to deliver.
Catherine Afeku donated GH¢ 10,000 together with assorted drinks to the Lower and Upper Axim Traditional Councils.
The festival was finally climaxed by a beach jam which was organized by Livewire Events under the auspices of the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture to entertain the people.
Artistes who rocked the stage included D-Black, Kuami Eugene, Kidi, Sefa, Kwesi Arthur, Osayo, Wisa Gried, Dahlim, Kobla Junior and Nero X and some local artists of the area.