Hɔmɔwɔ returns to La

BY: Kweku Zurek
The La Kpa Wulↄmↄ, Nii Yemo Obroni VII (right) dancing at the durbar
The La Kpa Wulↄmↄ, Nii Yemo Obroni VII (right) dancing at the durbar

The chiefs and people of La climaxed their Hɔmɔwɔ celebration on Wednesday, August 25, 2022, with a durbar at Kpatsoŋshi, La in Accra.

Clad in white and accompanied by traditional leaders, traditional priests and traditional priestesses, as well as customary songs and the beating of 400-year-old drums, the La Kpa Wulɔmɔ (Chief Fetish Priest of the La Kpa Deity), Nii Yemo Obroni VII, led the traditional rhythmic Kpa Dance rite on a stretch of pavement at Kpatsoŋshi.

The traditional leaders danced to tunes from the 400-year-old drums

He danced to Kpa, the only music that is permitted during the festival at La as a medium of social protest and resistance among the people which also clarifies some generalisations about Hɔmɔwɔ.

Other traditional leaders who also performed the dance included the La Mankralo, Nii Obodai Adai IV; the La Shikitele, Nii Adjei Koofeh IV the Sakumo Wulɔmɔ, Nuumo Sakumo.

In attendance at the durbar was the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey; the Member of Parliament (MP) of La Dadekotopon, Rita Odoley Sowah; the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) of the La Dade-Kotopon Municipal Assembly, Reverend Solomon Kotey Nikoi and a former MP of the area, Vincent Sowah Odotei.

From Left: Vincent Sowah Odotei, former MP for La Dadekoton, Rita Odoley Sowah, MP for La Dadekotopon; and Henry Quartey, the Greater Accra Regional Minister

Peaceful celebration
In an address, the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey commended the chiefs and people of La for a peaceful celebration of this year's Hɔmɔwɔ festival.

According to him, the La Hɔmɔwɔ celebration, which started in April, had showed that it was possible to celebrate the festival in peace and unity.
He also urged members of the La traditional council to be guided by the same principles of peace, unity and development in the process to enstool the next La Mantsɛ.

The Jaranↄyei

Mr Quartey further advised young people from La to learn the customs and traditions to ensure that they do not become extinct in future.

Flanked by the MP and the MCE, Mr Quartey also urged the young people of La to eschew violence in their personal lives and in politics.

He said politics was not about physical violence but a battle of ideas and ways to develop one's community.
He also extended greetings from President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo to the people of La.

In response, the La Shikitele assured the regional minister that they will be guided by the principles of peace, unity and development in all their traditional rites and customs.
The MP for the area, Madam Sowah also urged residents of La to continue to coexist in peace and work to develop the area.

Sprinkling of Kpokpoi
Prior to that, the La Kpa Wulɔmɔ last Tuesday morning led the sprinkling of kpokpoi, the traditional corn meal and the pouring of libation to signify a return of the Hɔmɔwɔ festival to La for the first time in four years.

The chiefs and people of La had not celebrated the Hɔmɔwɔ festival since January 2019 following the death of the La Mantse, Nii Kpobi Tettey Tsuru III.

After the Wulɔmɔ had sprinkled the Kpokpoi, other traditional leaders including the Nii Mankralo, Nii Shikiteele, the Kowe Nyonmotsaa Wulɔmɔ and other clan heads also sprinkled the Kpokpoi at other sacred places and clan houses within La.

After the sprinkling of kpokpoi by traditional leaders on Tuesday, residents shared the delicacy with family and friendsAfter the sprinkling of kpokpoi by traditional leaders on Tuesday, residents shared the delicacy with family and friends

This paved the way for the Kɔgbamɔ (eating of kpokpoi) by residents of La and their friends.

Unique celebration
Speaking in an interview with The Mirror at Nii Odoi Oworsorwe alias Patapaa We in La, the Chairman of the La Hɔmɔwɔ Planning Committee, Nii Komieter George said the Kɔgbamɔ rite was part of the activities to climax the celebration which started in April.

Children were not left out of the celebration

He said the event was preceded by a "homecoming" of all natives of La and their friends from across the world who arrived at La last Monday.
Nii Komieter advised the people of La and their friends to be united and work towards developing the town.

The theme for this year’s celebration was "United for Development through our culture and traditions".