Kumasi State

KUMASE  STATE 

Kumase is Asante and Asante is Kumase. ” This statement describes the importance of Kumase to the Asante Kingdom and for that matter, the importance of Kumase State. The terrain of Kumase city shows the physical site of the towns in Asante: high lying areas like towns on hilly areas of Asante, low lying areas like low lying towns of Asante, flat areas like flat lying towns of Asante and undulating areas like towns of that nature of Asante. For this reason, the wish of every Asante National is to build a house in Kumase. This shows how dear the city is to the heart of every Asante born. In short, ” Kumase is to the Asantes as Jerusalem is to the Isrealites .

The ruling clan of Kumase State is the Oyoko clan and the Paramount Chief of Kumase State is also the King of Asante Kingdom. The stool of Kumase State is the celebrated ” Sikadwa  Kofi  ”  – the Golden Stool of Asante.

Rattray in his book entitled  ” ASANTE LAWS AND CONSTITUTION ” when writing the history of Nsuta State wrote that Kokofu, Nsuta and Kumase stools had a common ancestors by name Ekuru who came from  Asumegya ‘  Santemanso ‘ . According to Rattray, Ekuru gave birth to two women, namely  Yita  and  Antwiwaa Nyame. The Nsuta people were descendants of Yita  while the Kumase and Kokofu people were the descendants of Antwiwaa Nyame. Kokofu history as recorded by Rattray states that Antwiwaa Nyame gave birth to children namely  Twum  and  Antwi , Pinaman Panin ,  Tentia  Kwasi  and Oti Akenten.  Pinaman Panin gave birth to Atea.  Atea gave birth to Gyami  , Mmua Brayie and Manu . Manu gave birth to  Osei Tutu  and Nyarko Kusiamoa .  Nyarko Kusiamoa also gave birth to  Opoku Ware  I.  The Oyoko clan which stayed at Kokofu had Pinaman Panin as their first chief and queen- mother, and Gyami as their first male chief.

Twum and Antwi                                     Sons of  Antwiwaa Nyame

Oti   Akenten                                            Son of    Antwiwaa Nyame

Osei  Tutu                                                 Son  of   Manu

Opoku  Ware                                            Son  of   Nyarko  Kusiamoa

The following are the Chiefs and Kings who have ruled Kumase Oyoko clan from the ancient time to the present:

Nana Twum and Antwi    (  They ruled simultaneously )

Nana Kwabia  Amamfi

Nana Oti  Akenten

Nana Obiri  Yeboa

Nana  Osei  Tutu   (  The first Asantehene  )                                        1680 – 1717

Nana  Opoku  Ware  I                                                                               1720 –  1750

Nana  Kusi  Obodum                                                                                1750 –  1764

Nana  Osei  Kwadwo                                                                                1764 –  1777

Nana  Osei  Kwame  Panin                                                                      1777 –   1798

Nana  Opoku  Fofie                                                                                   1798 –  1799

Nana  Osei Kwame Bonsu                                                                        1800 –  1823

Nana  Osei  Yaw  Akoto                                                                             1824 –  1834

Nana  Kwaku  Dua  I                                                                                   1834 –  1867

Nana  Kofi  Kakari                                                                                       1867 –  1874

Nana  Mensa  Bonsu                                                                                   1874 –  1883

Nana  Kwaku  Dua  II                                                                                    1884 –

Nana  Kwaku  Dua  III  ( Alias Agyeman  Prempeh I                                1888 –  1931

Nana  Osei  Agyeman  Prempeh  II                                                             1931 –  1970

Nana  Opoku  Ware  II                                                                                    1970 –  1999

Nana  Osei  Tutu  II          (  The present King )                                           1999 –

It must be noted that the first rulers from Nana Twum and Antwi to Obiri Yeboa ruled when Asante Kingdom had not been founded. It was Nana Osei Tutu aided by his adviser and spiritualist, Komfo Anokye who was also the chief of Agona State, who organised the Kumase State into military groups called ” Fekuo ” . Each Fekuo group had the head of the group called ” Fekutire ” . Each of the Fekutire also had the seat of administration of the Fekuo.

The table below shows the Kumase Fekuo groups, the Fekutire or head , their towns and the King who created the Fekuo.

FEKUO                 FEKUTIRE                             CAPITAL                          CREATOR

Kontire                 Kontihene                              Bantama                      Nana Osei Tutu

Akwamu              Akwamuhene                         Ahafo                            Nana Osei Tutu

Gyase                  Gyamasehene                        Asikasu                           Nana Osei Tutu

Adonten              Adontenhene                          Aduaben                        Nana Osei Tutu

Nifa                      Asokore Mamponhene          Asokore Mampon       Nana Osei Tutu

Benkum               Tafohene                                 Tafo                                 Nana Osei Tutu

Kyidom                Kyidomhene                            Akyeremade                 Nana Osei Tutu

Oyoko                 Oyokohene                               Abirem                            Nana Osei Tutu

Ankobea             Ankobeahene                           Adum                              Nana Opoku Ware I

Manwere            Manwerehene                           Atwima  Heman           Nana Kwaku Dua  I

Nkosuo               Nkosuohene                             Sepe  Temponmu          Nana Opoku Ware II

The Fekutire formed as the cabinet of Kumase State who helped the King to rule the state. Each of the towns of Kumase State belongs to one of the Fekuo listed above.Each Fekuo is also subdivided thus:

Apart from serving as the cabinet to the King ,when it comes to the affairs of Kumase State,they also serve as the friends of the Amanhene (paramount chiefs) . Each the Amanhene (paramount chief) has one of the Fekutire who plays host to him when he comes to Kumase.  However when it comes to seeking audience with the King , it is the King,s linguist in charge of the particular state,s affairs who goes to book the appointment. When the time is fixed , the linguist concerned leads the Omanhene to the King for discussion. It is important that the King,s linguist is on the known and present at all official appointments of the Paramount Chief or Omanhene and the King. It is only the Omanhene or Paramount Chief of Edweso State who doesn’t book appointment with the King through the King,s linguist but through the Nsumankwaahene ( the chief spiritualist of the King ) . When it comes to private discussions with the King , the Amanhene or Paramount Chiefs book their private appointments and they go to the King without the linguist in charge of the affairs of their states.

Kumase State has more chiefs than any of the Paramount Chiefs or Amanhene. There are chiefs for the numerous towns of the State. There are also many Aberempon in the Kumase State. It is the Asantehene or King of Asante State alone who has the power to create stools to commemorate events, moods , services and deeds of valour.  Examples are the following:

( A )  EVENTS :

Nkabom stool  –  created by Nana Osei  Agyeman Prempeh  II  in 1935 to commemorate the restoration of Asante Confederacy.

( B )  MOOD :

Atipin  stool  –  created by Nana Osei Kwame  Panin

( C )  SERVICE  :

Sompa stool  –  created by  Nana  Opoku  Ware II in 1984

( D )  DEED OF VALOUR :

Nkosuo  stool  –  created by  Nana  Opoku  Ware  II in 1985

It is after the creation of a stool that the Paramount Chiefs who wish are permitted to create such stools in their states

The head of Kumase State is the Asantehene or the Asante King. He is at the same time head of Asante Kingdom. Because of this unique position of Asantehene as the head of Asante Kingdom, when the Asanteman Council meets, he occupies the chair as Asantehene ( King of Asante) and not as the Paramount Chief of Kumase State, but the Kumase State should not be left without a representative. Therefore some divisional chiefs of Kumase State have been made member of the Asanteman Council as Kumase State representative.

The chiefs are the following:

The Bantamahene who is the Kontihene (war leader 1 ) of Kumase State

The Asafohene  who is the Akwamuhene ( war leader 2 ) of Kumase State

The Adontenhene  ( the commander of the main flank ) of Kumase State

The Akyempemhene who is the Kyidomhene  ( commander of the rear flank ) of Kumase State.

These four divisional chiefs have their stools raised almost to the level of the Paramount Chiefs but they do not exercise authority over the Kumase State as the Paramount Chiefs exercise authority in their individual states. Two of the stools, one created by Nana Opoku Ware  I  and the other created by Nana Opoku Ware II needs some mentioning and study.  Nana Opoku Ware I created the Ananta stool as his personal battalion commanded by himself and this battalion was not under the war chief of Kumase State. The troops forming the battalion were chosen from Kumase State and the other Asante States. The battalion was set up to counteract any coup d’etat which may be planned against the King by the commander of the King,s army. No Paramount Chief has Anantahene except only the Asantehene.

Nana Opoku Ware II also created the Nkosuo stool to meet the development drive of the present era. The King advised all the Paramount Chiefs in his Kingdom to create Nkosuo stools to enhance developments in their various states. The other important stool next to that of Asantehene is the Asantehemmaa stool ( the queen-mother of Asante state). The Queen-Mother of Kumase State is known as Asantehemmaa. Any woman enstooled as queen-mother of any Asante States is presented to the Asantehemmaa for her advice before she gets the necessary recognition from her subjects as a queen-mother of her state.

Source: The Kingdom of Asante

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