Kwahu or Kwawu people are hardworking and famous business-oriented Kwa-speaking people that forms a subset of the larger Akan ethnic group living in the south-central Ghana, on the west shore of Lake Volta.
Kwahu’s speak a dialect of Akan language called Twi and live specifically in the mountainous part of Eastern Region of Ghana these are some of the towns that forms the kwahu land, Abene, Abetifi, Pepease, Atibie, Nkwatia, Obo, Bepong, Tafo, Akwasiho, Obomeng, Twenedurase, Nteso, Mpraeso, Asakraka, Aduamoa, Pitiko, Sadan, Bukuruwa, Nkwantanan, Ahinasie and Donkorkrom, Kotoso etc
Macmillan and Kwamena Poh (1965) described the wonderful climate of the mountainous town, Abetifi as “the Switzerland of West Africa, with nights as cool as May nights in Europe”.
According to an associate professor at
the Folklore Institute of Indiana University, the Kwahu’s are mountain-dwellers who are considered to be “wealthy, successful traders who reside at the top of a mountain, a location which is somewhere moved from the other Akan groups”
The slogan of the kwahu is Asase Aban, Yεnte Gyae (Protectors of the Land, We don`t quit) and also Oboכּ (Rock) or Oboכּ ba (Child of the Rock)
Most kwahu’s are very famous for
their industriousness and uncanny entrepreneurial skills they have put up huge wonderful mansions with expensive and advanced architecture on the mountains, most people in Ghana stereotype Kwahu people of indulging in ritual or blood money (sika aduro). Others say Kwahus use Nziema Bayie or wizardry in making money, indeed all of these are pure lies and fabrications.
The kwahu is very modest, shrewd and highly economic in any venture they undertake.
The average kwahu will only spend on a business that brings them more due to this, people tag kwahu’s as ‘pεpεe’ (misers) and they have been likened to the Jews in medieval Europe.
Apart from their successes in trade, the annual Easter festivity celebration has now been accepted as part of the culture.
The grandeur of the celebration of Easter in Kwahu has become legendary on the calendar of popular celebrations in Ghana; millions of people from all over the country and beyond throng the mountains merely to experience this uncharacteristic festival.
The annual Kwahu Easter Festival has now become an omnibus event where all manner of people travel to the top of the Kwahu Ridge to celebrate.
Almost every Kwahu town organise one form of activity or the other during this time.
Kwahus use red, black and white as their colours.
The red represents the blood of their forefathers (ancestors) that was shed to save Kwahuman. In view of this, red (korbene) is used during funerals.
The white signifies victory, which is normally associated to powder or kaolin. It is also used for ceremonies like birth, marriage, funerals for the aged, and also for festivals like adae in remembrance of their ancestors and heroes.
The colour black is also worn during funerals to mourn the
The logo or emblem adopted by Kwahu people has the following features: a stool, two crossed tusks of an elephant, a background that depicts the mountains, green vegetation (forest) and a building with a cross.
The two elephant tusks that have been crossed indicate the political strength of Kwahu people.
The stool is the seat of the paramountcy which represents the soul of the people.
The mountain depicts the mountainous region where the people live.
The tree with green leaves shows the rich vegetation Kwahu people have.
The house indicates the settlement of the Kwahu’s.
The cross on top of the building signifies Kwahus love for the word of God.
These same symbols are modified and used by the five (5) district capitals in Kwahu and they are Kwahu South District (Mpraeso), Kwahu West (Nkawkaw), Kwahu East (Abetifi), Kwahu Afram plains North (Donkorkrom), Afram Plains South (Tease)…….to be continue