We’ll leverage Book Capital status to strengthen Ga language, ethnicity — Ga Mantse
Nii Tackie Teiko Tsuru II — Ga Mantse

We’ll leverage Book Capital status to strengthen Ga language, ethnicity — Ga Mantse

The Ga Mantse, Nii Tackie Teiko Tsuru II, has said the Ga State would leverage Accra’s selection as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) World Book Capital 2023 to promote the use of Ga books and to strengthen the Ga and Dangbe languages in the region.


That, he said, was because the invasion of other cultures in the region had adversely affected the speaking and usage of the language and ethnicity of the Ga State as a whole.

“It is a challenge, since language defines our ethnicity as a people. As a result, the Ga Mantse foundation will like to partner stakeholders through the project on how to build a firm foundation to strengthen our language and ethnicity”, he said.

The king also appealed to the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service (GES) to do their part by posting Ga graduate teachers to the region to enable them to teach the Ga language in schools. 

Event, enstoolement

Nii Teiko Tsuru II said this at a durbar held last Monday in honour of the Director-General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, in recognition of the selection of Accra as the World Book Capital (WBC) for 2023 and to kickstart the activities.

The World Book Capital (WBC) is an initiative of UNESCO which recognises the commitment of cities in the promotion of the reading of books and this year’s celebration is on the theme: "Reading to Connect Minds for Social Transformation.

Therefore, cities designated as UNESCO World Book Capital carry out year-long activities with the aim of encouraging a culture of reading in all ages, sharing UNESCO’s values and  raising awareness of literacy and reading issues.

As part of the ceremony, Ms Azoulay was enstooled as an Honorary Queen Mother of the Ga State and the Ga Traditional Council and immediately adorned in Ga traditional regalia by queen mothers of the Ga State to signify her new status.

She was given the title Naa Adoley Oheyefeo I

The colourful ceremony was graced by many distinguished personalities, notable among them being a Deputy Minister of Education, Reverend John Ntim Fordjour;  the country’s Ambassador to France and Portugal,  Anna Bossman; the Country representative of UNESCO, Abdourahamane Diallo; the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey; the Mayor of Accra, Elizabeth Naa Kwatsoe Sackey, and members of the Ga Traditional Council including paramount chiefs, priests, priestesses and linguists.

It was marked by energetic cultural dance displays and the intermittent firing of muskets by Ga warlords to signify the presence of important guests of the king. 


Mr Diallo, who spoke on behalf of the newly enstooled queen mother, expressed his gratitude to the king for the honour and his recognition of UNESCO’s activities in the region over the years.

He, therefore, assured the Ga State of the organisation’s continuous support and partnership to implement more heritage projects and to protect existing ones. 


Rev. Ntim Fordjour said Accra’s selection as the World Book Capital was a testament to the government’s educational interventions which had brought much progress, including the increase of children in primary Two and lower grades, who could read from two per cent in 2015 to 36 per cent.

“It was all as a result of deliberate action plans and policies that we put in place, led by Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Minister of Education, and we don’t want to end there; we want to take it to a minimum of 90 per cent by 2030 and there are a number of interventions we have put in place”, he said.

He also said it signified the end of an era which popularised the notion that one could hide anything from the black man by simply putting it in a book adding; “This time, we are going to be reading so whatever you put in a book it will not be hidden.”

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