There is a saying that “To destroy a people, you must first destroy their identity, and the only way to do that is to destroy their culture” and this seem to be the agenda of the early Christian missionaries who came to Africa with the Bible to introduce Christianity to the people and colonize them, according to the ex-Chief of Agona Asafo in the Central Region, Nana Yamfo Asuako XI.
According to him, for lack of understanding of the culture of Africans, the early European missionaries deemed everything alien to them as fetish and described it as such and condemned it, and this, he said, has led to the neglect of their culture by Africans, in the name Christianity, which he said has led to the lose of their identity.
Narrating the history of Asafo to Ghananews247.com on the sidelines of the celebration of this year’s Akwambo festival of the town, Nana Yamfo Asuako XI who vacated the stool on the grounds of ill-health revealed that every society in the world have a culture they practice, including the so-called European missionaries who came to condemn the culture of Africans, noting that the slaughtering of animals and pouring their blood, including oil on the alter as instructed by God to the Israelites is also a culture still held in high esteem by the Israelites.
According to him, the great grandfathers of Asafo, led by Odei Panin and his brother Odei Ketsewa with their sister who served as their Queen mother from the Royal Twidan Clan migrated front Tekyiman in the then Bono Ahafo region to the southern part of the country over four hundred years ago and first settled at Ayinam for some time before moving to a forest area which was referred to as “sika kokoo”, (meaning a area of gold) nearly their current place of abode, Asafo.
He further noted that prior to their final settlement, they made series of short settlements on their way, looking for water until they finally found the Ayensu river and decided to settled there permanently.
According to the ex-Chief, they were predominantly farmers and their population grew and became skilled beaters of a particular tree stem into sponge called “esaw” and was therefore described as “esawfo” by other people which was corrupted into “Asafo” hence the name.
By: Robert Ayanful