There are at least two ways in which we can honour our ancestors. One of these is to build monuments of them so that when we, particularly children, see it they would ask: “Who is that?” and then we would tell them the story of that ancestor.
The second is to maintain the monument we build to always keep it in good shape. While the first way of honouring our ancestors shows we remember what they did for us, the second shows we always have them in mind. While we have shown clearly that we remember what Mantse (King) Nii Tackie Tawiah did, the state of the monument we have built to him shows, clearly, that we have forgotten about him.
The monument of Tawiah in Accra Central
Information at tinkongbee.wordpress.com tells us that Tawiah is the son of Nii Teiko Doku and Naa Ashong Danso of Asere. He was a descendant of another illustrious Ga-Dangme king, Nii Ayi Kushie, and succeeded Mantse Yaote. Tawiah “was not only development-oriented, but also a leader who identified… with his people. While he fought relentlessly to protect and uphold Ga-Dangme customs and traditions, he was also enlightened and progressive enough to abolish obnoxious customs.”
The shocking discovery at tinkongbee.wordpress.com is that “the final resting place of the mortal remains of this most distinguished Ga king has now become [an] unimpressive [enclave] within the walls of the Accra Brewery Limited” near the offices of Daily Graphic at Adabraka Official Town.
Worst, the monument we built (in the J.A. Kufuor era) to Tawiah in Accra Central, at the junction made by Makola No. 1 and Makola no. 2, is in shabby, ruinous state.
The grassless grass sections and dried shrubs, and washing-off whitewash indicate neglect.
This image of female attendant (in centre of picture) is whole.
The neck of this female attendant is broken; it has been so for years.
Ghana and Africa, is this how we honour our heroes?
(Tawiah picture; courtesy tinkongbee.wordpress.com. Other pictures taken by Ti-Kelenkelen.)
T.Kelenkele by: Yirenkyi Lamptey