We have visited 2 different ceremonies in Ghana. One is a traditional custom of "yam on stool" and the other is for "Queen Mother of Development".
A kind of harvest ceremony. Only "yams" can be put on the stool. Other vegetables are not treated as well as yams. Maybe it is village residents' staple food, I guess. So people put yams on the stool showing respect. During the ceremony, they drummed, danced and prayed. They also sacrificed a goat for the celebration and appreciation to God. I didn't realize whole process of the ceremony in details due to the limited time. But the point is you were really there and observed the vivid proceeding which is always recorded on books by yourselves - the cane of authority, chief, traditional dressings and solemn ritual¡Ketc.
I liked this ceremony very very much! It was an unforgettable experience to me absolutely!
This ceremony is aimed to coronate one who contributes substantially to town by the supreme chief. Today was Joy's big day because she was going to be crowned the title of Queen Mother of Development. By the way, if the one who's going to be crowned is male, his title will be "Development King".
At the beginning, Joy had to put on traditional ritual dressings, wear golden ornaments and put on local-style black slippers. While dressing up, she went downstairs from 2nd floor of the chief's house. By her sides were the two wives of the chief and other people were just following. One of them put up a peculiar and traditional umbrella above Joy's head. Then, Joy and two of the wives were moving forward in front of the chief. The emcee read praying incantation and Joy followed his ritual performances. Afterwards, Joy sat down next to the chief and then the wives.
At the same time, there were many village people crowded into the chief's house. Some sat down on chairs behind the chief and some stood up by the side. There was an interesting thing that worth mentioning. Throughout the journey so far, the ones we met were all invited to this ceremony: two guides from Kakum National Park, the dancer and the artist from Cape Coast town, Muse (a palm farmer), Kafui (OVF founder) and his elder brother. It seemed to be a little traditional party for Joy.
Latter on, some of people started dancing in front of chief and Joy with powerful drumming. We were taking pictures and video ceaselessly. No doubt, we do enjoy the ceremony with solemn and lovely moods.
The ceremony lasted 2 hours. From now on, Joy has a new Ghanaian name - Nana Efua Tweneboah II. "Nana" stands for respectful form of address. "Efua" stands for Friday born female, and Tweneboah is a given name. So Joy's new name stands for that one is strive to make better life for farmers or residents in Jukwa.
PS: The chief is inherited from generation to generation in light of matriarchy. This chief, King Odeefo Boa Amponsem III governing the kingdom of Denkyira, was assigned by his uncle who is a brother of his mother. So Amponsem must assign a successor from one of his sisters' sons before he passes away. However, if elders do not agree with the successor, they will elect another one. Chief's mother has the power to make a decision.
See, it is an ancient clan society according to anthropology.