Ya Na Abubakari Mahama II, the Overlord of Dagbon, has expressed his intention to introduce an annual reconciliation ceremony inspired by the Anlo people to ensure peace and unity in the Dagbon Kingdom.
The Overlord believes that adopting a similar tradition will help maintain and strengthen the hard-won peace in his kingdom, which has experienced long-standing conflicts between its Andani and Abudu royal gates.
The Anlo people, as part of their migratory festival known as Hogbetsotsoza, conduct a “nugbidodo” (reconciliation) rite every first Saturday in November.
This rite allows for reflection, soul-searching, and the resolution of conflicts within families and among the people.
Ya Na Abubakari acknowledges the significance of such a ceremony for Dagbon.
During this year's Hogbetsotsoza durbar at Anloga, Ya Na Abubakari conveyed his thoughts through a speech read on his behalf.
He said, “This Anlo peacekeeping ceremony is worth copying, especially for Dagbon, where the Abudu and Andani enmity had taken a huge toll on our commonwealth. It is to further strengthen and sustain the peace that we recently have in Dagbon.”
He also emphasised the importance of the ceremony's lessons for the entire country, as it provides an environment conducive to peaceful development.
“I also learnt that during the month of the festival, general cleaning is carried out in all communities, which is also a laudable exercise to promote the health of the people in the communities. We also will like to adopt that in our communities,” Yaa Naa Mahama added.
Furthermore, the Overlord of Dagbon expressed his solidarity with those affected by floods in Anloland, particularly due to the Akosombo Dam spillage.
He offered his support and called upon the government to find lasting solutions to the recurring flooding issues. He noted that Buipe, in the northern region, had also been adversely affected by these floods.
Togbi Sri III, the Awoamefia of Anlo, extended his gratitude to Ya Na Abubakari for honouring the invitation to be part of the historic Hogbetsotsoza celebration. He viewed the visit as a gesture to strengthen the enduring friendship between Anlo, Asante, and Dagbon, the three kingdoms recognized by colonial administrators.
The Awoamefia encouraged the youth of Anlo to preserve the unity and time-tested values of the Anlo State, as conveyed in Togbi Sri's valedictory message.
He urged them to distance themselves from vices such as cybercrime, armed robbery, prostitution, and disrespect towards elders, as these actions could disrupt peace, unity, and the cherished traditional values of the community.
Hogbetsotsoza, also known as Hogbeza, commemorates the migration of the Ewe-Dogbo people from Notsie in Togo to their present location, celebrating their rich cultural heritage and history.