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AsantemanWeb Profile: Nana Boakye Tromo II

 AsantemanWeb Profile: Nana Boakye Tromo II

Nana Boakye Tromo II (seated in middle), Omanhene of Dua Yaw Nkwanta

Perhaps one of the the longest reigning Chief in Asanteman….

Nana Boakye Tromu II Omanhene of Duayaw Nkwanta celebrated his 50th anniversary on the Stool in December 2017.

The royal family of Duayaw Nkwanta belong to the Ekuona Clan (Ekuona Abusua). They claim to have descended from the sky on a gold chain called ATWEABAN on a Friday (Efiada), ensconced in a huge, shining brass basin. The group landed in a dense forest which they called Omankwaemu (Mankwaemu), also known as “Kannianko,” about three miles from the location of the present town, which spot later became the burial ground (BANMU/BAAMU) or Royal Mausoleum of the Ekuona Royal family of Duayaw Nkwanta.

The first ruler of the Nkwanta State was called Nana Dua Yaw, and the first queen mother, Nana Seiwaa Kɛse. It is from the name of the first Chief Dua Yaw, that the name DUA YAW was added as a prefix to NKWANTA to become the official name of the town… DUAYAW NKWANTA, that is to say, Dua Yaw’s terminus/junction/crossroads.

It must be noted that whenever an AKAN family group claims to have descended from ƐSORO meaning from above, literally taken as the Sky, it doesn’t mean that, the group actually descended/originated from the sky.

When an AKAN group says “yɛfiri ɛsoro na ɛbae,” it should NOT be implied that they originated from the sky above. Rather it means that, said group originated from a northenly direction; from a location to the NORTH of their present location.

That NORTH is variously postulated as somewhere in Ancient Egypt or the Old Ghana Empire in the general area of the present day country of Mali. The nature of kingship and the paraphernalia of monarchy in the Ghana Empire… the use of gold as adornment especially, is quite the same found in the AKANDOM of Ghana and the Ivory Coast. It is unique to the AKAN people. “Yɛfiri ɛsoro na ɛbae,” should mean we arrived here from the NORTH, and also, not necessarily the present day NORTH of Ghana, by the way.

The settlement that became Duayaw Nkwanta served as the entrepot/terminus of four main trade routes coming from TAFO; AMAKOM; DANKYIRA and TAKYIMAN. The settlement therefore became known as NKWANTKESE or the ‘major entrepot/terminus, serving locations to the northern areas of Bono and other parts in present day Ivory Coast.

According to the Ekuona ruling family, theirs was a peaceful existence until the rise of the ASANTE KINGDOM.

First, the defeat of the ADUANA CLAN of Domaa-Suntresu by Osei Tutu I, and the resulting migration of the Domaa who sought refuge at BOMAA, then called Abampreduase, brought the powerful Domaa into a close proximity. The Domaahene, through his hunter Bofuo Kofi Bene, invited the Nkwantahene to join him at Abampreduase. In other words, Chief Dua Yaw of Nkwanta would become a suzerain of Domaa. The Nkwantahene firmly refused the unsolicited offer.

With the rise of Asante, it was only a matter of time before Duayaw Nkwanta succumbed to the power of Asante. In about 1712, Asantehene Ɔsɛi Tutu I attacked and ransacked Ahwene Kɔkɔɔ [Ahwene Kokoo] or Wankyi. Though the ruling family of Wankyi was able to hide the Royal Stool, Wankyi came under the rule of Asanteman. That fateful day of the Asante conquest and destruction of Wankyi is marked as a Great Oath of Wankyi: “Kru Yaw, a, egya tua n’ano,”(the Thursday massacre marked by gunfire….fire’).

With regard to Dua Yaw Nkwanta, it lost its independence during that 1712 campaign, and was brought firmly under Asante, and became part of Asanteman after Asantehene Opoku Ware I defeated Takyiman in about 1722. In these wars, the people fled north to Gyaman. Later, a royal named Osei Dankwa returned to Nkwanta. On the return journey, he was joined by several people from Gyaman… Drobo, and Nsɔko.. Nsawkaw., who assisted in the re-establishment of his state.

Osei Dankwa swore the Oath of Allegiance to the Asantehene, and was proclaimed Chief under the name Kofuo Asamoa. He rebuilt the destroyed capital at Asuogya on the banks of the river Apaape.

Duayaw Nkwanta established several ‘hunter’s camps (Bofuo Akuraa or Bofuo Kuro), that are now major towns. The hunters or Abofouo/Abomofuo hunted big game for the Chief of Duayaw Nkwanta. Some of these towns are:

AKUMADAN, The name is derived from the founder, the hunter, Ankama, and means ‘Ankama’s hut‘, or Ankama’s place/house.

SUSUANSO: The hunter Kwabena Dwoben, set up camp near the river Susuan stream which flows near Mankwaemu into the Tano River, does beget the town of Susuanso… on the Susan River.

TANOSO: The hunter Akwasi Aboagye, set up a hunting camp on the banks of the Tano River. It became known as Akwasi Aboagyekrom (Kyenkyenase) and, the hunter Kwabena Agyei set up a camp nearby, that later became Seinkyemu. The Chief of Duayaw Nkwanta sent a Priestess named Mosua to take control of the TANO SHRINE located there, and the settlements became known as TANOSO… after the powerful River Tano Deity.

By: Sankofa Asante

P.S. This short note on Duayaw Nkwanta is dedicated to my dearly departed friend Dr. Kwaku Sei (Osei Kwaku), formerly of Howard University, Washington, D.C.; former Deputy Director of Ghana’s NADMO; and a Professor of International Studies and Governance at GIMPA, Legon. Kwaku, a beloved son of Duayaw Nkwanta passed on about four years ago. Kwaku da yie.

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