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Regional News of Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Source: GNA

Forthcoming Edina Bakatue to focus on sanitation

The Paramount Chief of the Edina Traditional Area, Nana Kodwo Conduah the sixth, has indicated the need for the people of Elmina and its environs, to take a serious look at sanitation in the area.

He cautioned that the level of filth gradually engulfing the area could have a drastic repercussion on tourism and consequently the area’s local economy, stressing that tourism thrived on a clean environment.

Launching this year's Bakatue Festival at his palace in Elmina over the weekend, he stressed that “if people travel all the way from America, Europe and elsewhere, to visit, only to find a dirty environment, the likelihood of repeating the visit will be nil".

Nana Conduah stated that it was in furtherance of the traditional council's war against filth that this year’s festival would be celebrated on the theme: “Cleanliness is life, let's help clean our environment".

He urged people in the traditional area to support the council in achieving its intended goal.

“Bakatue” literally translated as a symbolic “desiltng of the lagoon”, is celebrated to commemorate the founding of the town, reaffirm their relationship with Nana Benya, the lagoon deity, and foster unity among the people.

It also ushers in the fishing season, after a month-long ban placed on fishing in the Benya lagoon is lifted, to pave the way for the resumption of brisk fishing, as well as sale of freshly harvested crops.

With the celebration starting from the first Tuesday of the month of July, this year’s edition, would be the 17th since the festival was formalized as an annual event and the second after three years of chieftaincy disputes which halted the annual celebration.

Nana Conduah expressed gratitude to Groupe Nduom, founded by Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, leader of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) and Mpontuhen (Development Chief) of the Area, for offering to exclusively sponsor this year’s festival.

He described the sponsorship as a great relief, since it was the major challenge the council faced each year in the organisation of the festival.

Dr. Ndoum who was accompanied by his family, managers and staff of the various subsidiaries of the Groupe Ndoum Company, said the sponsorship was part of the company's corporate social responsibility for the town.

He said the people of Elmina, where he hails from and where he has more than 10 subsidiaries of his company, including TV and Radio stations, hotels and banks located, had contributed to the success of his business.

Dr. Nduom proposed that a day be set aside during the celebration of the festival to organise a food bazaar to showcase the indigenous delicacies of the traditional area.

The launch was interspersed with drumming, singing and dancing, led by the various traditional singing groups in the area.

The week-long programme of activities for this year’s celebration include regatta on the Benya lagoon on Tuesday July 7 during which the ban on fishing would be lifted , followed by other rituals and activities to be climaxed on July 11 with a grand durbar.

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