Five decades of leadership
· Nana Anyani Buadumo
By: Kofi Ekuban
ONE traditional ruler whose reign has brought sustained development and improved living conditions for his kith and kin is the Divisional Chief of Asankrangwa in the Western Region, Nana Anyani Buadum III.
Nana Buadum is arguably one of the longest serving traditional rulers of this country whose reign span the colonial era through pre-independence to post – independent Ghana. Under him the people under his jurisdiction have managed to turn around their lives through selfless sacrifices that have change the landscape of the Asankrangwa community.
Nana Buadum III, before his enstoolment was known as Kwabena Sekyim Odehye Kwabena Skyim was customarily nominated, elected and selected as Asankragwahene (Chief of Asankragwa) on March 27, 1952 with the stool name, Nana Anyani Buadum III. However, three years after his installation, he was destooled briefly and re-enstooled as Asankrangwahene under the name Nana Anyani Buadum III in 1955.
Having re-assumed the high position of Asankrangwahene, Nana first united the entire citizenry by involving them in all activities and decision-making processes. This made his reign symbol of unity and a source of inspiration to the people. He popularised the annual Yam Festival (i.e. Edepa Afahye) and gave it a new dimension.
He consented that all sub-chiefs and principal elders within his chiefdom should be carried in palanquins during festivals, a practice, which hitherto was never acceptable. The old system of organizing funerals by individual families had become a challenge to the people in view of debts incurred thereafter. Nana opted for the communal system of organizing funerals and thereby made funerals a social obligation. The change has really won him much popularity since the people soon realized the wisdom in showing concern to every bereaved family persons.
He reconstructed the old palace, which was built in 1937 into a modern edifice in 1964. A project, which has won him glory and fame and indeed the Asankrangwa Palace, stands out as one of the finest in Ghana today. As a true traditionalist, he introduced cultural and traditional entertaining groups like “Blues,” “Kept,” “Maintain’” “Too’” and Brass Band alongside, the existing ones like “Boos”, “SDI’” “Adachi”, “Conga”, “Fontonfrom”’ “Sumeda”, “Asafo”, “Aways”, (the polluted form of “All Ways”) among others as a means of not only entertaining the people but also for promoting the study of cultural and traditional values. His reign also witnesses the springing u of social and entertaining groups/clubs, which have contributed in no small way to the socio-cultural development of the divisional area. This can be attested by the formation of football clubs like Atomic Rangers FC Kikadious FCM Ridge Stars, FC and various gospel groups, youth organizations, brass band, etc.
Under his influence and initiative, new markets were established at Asankrangwa and Samreboi, He also encouraged the creation and establishment of market centres at Wasa Dunkwa, Benna Nkwanta, Ayensukrom and Toro Mapan’ all within his divisional area. Credit is also given to him for the construction of the Asankrangwa Durbar Centre. From that initiative other community centres have been put up at Asankran-Moseaso, Oda Anhwiamu, Tigarikrom, Aboifie, Attobrakrom, etc which are now serving as ideal facilities for meetings and public gatherings.
The rapid growth in size of Asankrangwa and other towns and villages within his divisional area cannot be mentioned without giving credence to Nana Buadum III. He is very selfless and non discriminator in leasing lands for development to both indigence and strangers. This has really led to the expansion of towns and making them economically attractive for the establishment and operation of institutions/organizations like banks, insurance companies, credit financial institutions and other commercial ventures.
Nana Anyani Buadum II was very instrumental in the establishment of many institutions, organizations and other development oriented projects. These include the Asankrangwa and Samreboi post offices; Asankrangwa and Samreboi police station, Asankrangwa and Samreboi main markets (1967) Asankrangwa Senior High School (1960), Asankrangwa Water Supply (1958 and 1998) and the Wasa Amenfi West District Assembly Office, Forestry Services offices at Asankrangwa and Samreboi.
The other are Cocoa Services Division office at Asankrangwa; Ghana Health Services office at Asankrangwa; Ghana health Services office at Asankrangwa, Ghana Education Service office at Asankrangwa, street, drains and other accessible roads, among others.
Nana Anyani Buadum II was instrumental in the sitting of the district capital of the former Aowin-Amenfi District Council at Asankrangwa when the Amenfi Local Council at Wasa Akropong and Aowin Local Council at Enchi were amalgamated. The former Council now has three districts, namely; Wasa Amenfi West, Wasa Amenfi East and Aiowin-Suaman District Assemblies.
He has always shown keen interest in all government projects located in his Divisional Area. It is, therefore, no wonder that nana committed a very vast piece of land at Asankran-Moseaso for the establishment of a Model Cocoa Plantation by the Ghana Cocoa Board in 1977. Nana Nyani Buadum III is also commended for the rapid population growth in hiss Divisional Area.
In 1965, he and his Elders initiated the system of granting farm lands on lease hold to both the indigenous and settler/stranger farmers. Most of these farm settlements have now developed into towns and big villages. Prominent among them are Toro Mpan, Nope, Ayensukrom, Nyame Nae, Brekumm, Nsabrekwa, Kwahu Bisagya, Woman No-Good, Kyeikrom, just to mention a few.
Nana Anyani Buadum III either was Chairman or Member of the Board of Governors of Asankrangwa Secondary School form 1960 1995. As a result of his good works, devotion and commitment during the period, the school honoured him by naming one of the boys’ dormitories after him in 1961.
As a Diplomat
The profile of Nana Anyani Buadum III can not be completed if his long-standing relationship with the Peace Corps Volunteers and the United States Presidency are no mentioned. He was one of the first Traditional Rulers who accepted the American Peace Corps Volunteers in 1964. After the arrival of the Volunteers in Asankrangwa Secondary School, the United States Embassy in Ghana detailed one Sergeant Striver to find out where the volunteers had been posted.
In fact, the Chief, Elders and the people of Asankrangwa warmly welcomed Sergeant Striver. He in turn recommended the area to the US Government. Nana and his Elders presented the skin of a Leopard (which symbolises the strength of his throne) through him to the then President of the United States of America, John F. Kennedy. A letter of appreciation or the gift was sent to the Asankrangwahene and his Elders.
This was featured in Ghana’s Ammanee news paper. Through this, Nana Anyani Buadum III and the wife have had the opportunity to visit the United States of America on several occasions. They had the privilege on two occasions to pay visits to the White House. Thanks to President Clinton’s Aides, who assisted them during their visits tot eh White House.
In 1972, the United African Company (UAC) that owned African Timber and Plywood Company Limited, whose head office was sited at Samreboi on Asankrangwa Stool Land, invited him and his wife to pay a working visit tot heir Head quarters in London. He also used that opportunity to visit Buckingham Palace.
Pilgrimage Nana Anyani Buadum II and his wife were among the first group of Ghanaians to visit the Holy Land (Israel) on a Pilgrimage in August, 1977. In the same year, Nana and his wife again went on another Pilgrimage to the Vatican in Rome. It was a blessing and an opportunity to visit the Holy Catechumen as well.
Nana Anyani Buadum was born in September 1923 at Nkwanta near Samreboi in the Western Region of Ghana. As a member of the Royal Agona Family of Asankrangwa, he lived under the tutelage of Nana Kofi Taakyi III from 1935. He started schooling at the Asankrangwa Government School and completed in 1946.
After his elementary school education in 1946, he continued to pursue his academic career at Cape Coast. In 1961, Nana Anyani Buadum married his current wife, Mrs. Agnes Ntiako-Buadum and had the marriage blessed at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at Asankrangwa in 1972.
Attributes and character
It is a great testimony worthy of emulation that for the 57 years and beyond that Nana Anyani Buadum III reigned and governed as a Traditional Ruler, he has never summoned any of his subjects, his neighbours or chiefs to any law court. This clean slate indicates the peaceful character Nana Anyani Buadum III is made of.
Being the ruler of great people of Asankrangwa Divisional Area.
He leads through consensus building. However, as a disciplinarian, Nana Anyani Buadum III knows when to take authority in honour of the great oath he had sworn to protect and governs his subjects. The present state of Asankrangwa Division is a credit to the enlightened, creative and experience leadership of Nana Anyone Badu III.
Daily Graphic - Page: 34 Monday, November 23, 2009