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Regional News Fri, 1 Nov 2013

The kingdom of the Anlos celebrate hogbetsotso festival

by Yao Fiagbeto

As we celebrate our unique and important Hogbetsotso festival we salute His Excellency King Awomefia Sri III, his Chiefs and the entire citizens of the Anlo Kingdom. On this day we must all be proud as descendants of fishing and a farming Kingdom and pledge to resuscitate the energy and pride of our ancestral Kings Men and women. We acknowledged the role they played in making good use of our lakes, rivers, the sea and the land to provide economic activities that sponsored most of our grand-parent and parent throughout their western education. We must also acknowledge and remember as we celebrate this august festival in our history that, the education of our grand-parents and parent have turned and continues to turn our accomplishment away from our ancestral inheritance ‘the economic activities of our ancestral land’. Togbiwo, Mamawo, and citizens of our great Fishing Kingdom, an independent Kingdom is a Kingdom that is able to know the value of the land they occupy, cherish it, protect it and most all utilize that land and its resources to feed her citizens. Hence, create numerous economic activities for her graduate, artisans and school dropouts. Such potential of an independent Kingdom will attract and retain not only her citizens but others to work and realize their full potentials and build on those potentials to create other modern and upgraded versions of their current or existing economic engines (activities). Throughout history, land acquisition, protecting and using that land to nourish oneself was and is still the origin of independence. An Independent nation from the onset had a thriving economy based on farming, fishing, cotton/mat weaving, art and craft, and local gin production etc. These economic activities became a unique underpinning process in elevating a whole area or community from poverty. No matter how primitive the formula was and is became the foundation upon which developed nations exploited their citizens’ talent and ingenuity for their human civilization and creativity. Therefore our Kingdom cannot afford our numerous institutions like Anseco, Ketasco, Zico, Ketabusco, Spaco, Antech, Akatsico, Aborsco, just to mention a few to produce graduates to feed the industries of other Kingdoms, and other continents. Today, His Excellency Togbi Awomefia Sri III and all his Chiefs and citizens must take cognizance of the fact that cultivating the land (rivers, lakes and lagoon) became the model and unpublicized SECRET for lifting communities into the middle class. The developed nations in the West (America and Europe), the Soviet Union, and now China invested sizable portion of their human capital and financial intake in Agriculture to sustain their economic growth. Therefore, His Excellency Togbi Awomefia Sri III and his Chiefs should the take the mantle of a fishing Kingdom proudly and pull all our human and financial resources towards effective and efficient development of the Keta Lagoon and transform it into a fishing industry that can absorb all our educated elites, artisans and school dropouts. Such an industry will also yield royalties towards building of permanent Royal Palace and financial upkeep of the King and His Chiefs. This will give us a competitive edge with sister Kingdoms like the Distinguished Kingdom of the Ashanti who receive royalties from cocoa farms and gold mines, and now the Fanti’s will soon start receiving royalties from oil production. Therefore, we beg on our King and his Chiefs for their indulgence and get our MPs, MCE and other officials doing our Kingdom’s business in government to assist in adhering to our plea to earmark sizable portion of our district budget to fishing and agriculture. Because once our Kingdom attain agriculture and fishing independence all other economic activities will be attain with substantial value added to our educational system in the Kingdom. Fellow citizens of our Kingdom, we all want to enjoy and experience the lifestyle that exist in America, Canada, Britain and the rest of the European world. It is a good thing and appropriate and our Kingdom should not deprive her citizen from such opportunity. But as we pursuit to become Westernized or Europeanized in our new found democracy, our district for that matter Kings and Chiefs who are the custodians of our land needs to understand the very institutions that make the system of America and Europe dazzling and attractive. This is not only an intellectual debate or technological research, but based on the experience in North America and Europe. The evidence of my plea is in the heartland (rural, villages, urban) of western countries where the mystery surrounding the greatness of these independent developed nations lie. Today I pray God Almighty to grant the custodians of our Great Kingdom the wisdom to understand and implement lessons learned from the realities on our streets, in the villages and towns in Africa and the Western World to see the vast difference in their choices of fundamental investment policies. The Anlo Kingdom future economic growth (in rural and urban centers) will depend on her ability to direct at least 60% of her budget from government and private sector into fishing and agriculture NOT OIL. It is time for a new focus in our Kingdom where our government is held accountable (MP’s, Assemblymen and women) to identify and implement various fishing and agriculture spinoffs (by-products industries) that will advance our Kingdom’s economic interests and sustain our way of life. Finally this august Hogbetsotso festival calls on the government of Ghana to draw a marshal plan which allots 60% of her oil revenue to fishing and agriculture industry. This Hogbetsotso festival must be rededicated to our Kingdom and Ghanaian man and womanhood in feeding ourselves and able to give leftovers to our sister starving nations. The men and women of the Western world, for them, the land is more than a livelihood, it is a legacy, a resource to be cared for, preserved, improved and pass on to the next generation. America believed their living and innovations depend on agriculture, that is why they continue producing an average more than 9,000 pounds of corn per acre, 31 million metric tons of soybeans, 3million bales of cotton a year. This few crops help feed thousands of factories that provide employment to all their citizens and foreigners. Communities are revived and sustained by new innovations in sciences in improving existing jobs. Their government unrelenting financial support for the American, Canadian, and European farmer continuous undisrupted to the extent of subsidizing food production in America, a supreme marshal plan rooted in the western political and economic policies. Agriculture is so high on the policy agenda of Western oil producing countries to the extent that oil wells in Texas, Montana, Oklahoma, Idaho, California, Nebraska British Columbia in Canada etc. for example, are all surrounded with enormous corn, soybeans and cattle farms, with rivers, lakes, and the sea producing tons and tons of fish to feed processing industries within the same oil drilling area. There are no idle lands in these western nations, even those lands without agriculture benefit are producing acres of trees, raw materials for paper and wood industries with financial support from oil revenue. The major government policy agenda is to invest massively in processing the land then other areas of investment will automatically be taken up by the market economy. Our Kingdomand Ghana must therefore emulate this approach invest aggressively 60% of her oil revenue in agriculture, animal rearing, and fishing, in short food production must take the chunk of our oil revenue and every other sector of the economy will be taken care of by the world market economy. We must be able to feed ourselves from our own land, the Soviet Union or Russia has done it and continuously year after year, feeding herself from her soil (maize production) likewise China their current economic glamour was secured or based on China’s huge human and financial investment in Agriculture (rice) able to utilize their own land and feed over billion population. Agriculture is the fundamental rock of their independence and their current economic boom. Keta district which reside in Anlo Kingdom together with other districts and Ghana in conjunction with citizens abroad must focus on creating millions of job through fishing, agriculture, animal and poultry farms and every other economic activity will follow assisting in eliminating poverty in our Kingdom and Ghana. Our chiefs and elders will no Longer rely on hand outs from politicians but will enjoy royalties from their local resources. Thank you His Excellency, Chiefs, togbiwo, mamawo, dumeviwo and the President of the Republic. Akpe na mikata. Anlo kotsie klo lo, na ke tsi deka no dzo me binu. Edu nome mase menye. Mawu neyra mikata. Longlive Togbi Awomefia Sri III, we wish you long healthy and prosperous reign. God bless you all, God bless Ghana. Our Kingdom and Ghana must be like North America and Europe.

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Yao Fiagbeto 0545111790 hedevodu@gmail.com, hedevodu@yahoo.com North-West Legon, Kwabenya. G/A Ghana P.O. BOX 3O, Atito via Anloga. V/R Ghana

Source: Yao Fiagbeto
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