The chiefs and people of Somé Traditional Area in the Ketu South Municipality of the Volta region have marked their annual traditional festival, Somé Tutu Za, with a call for unity and team work towards the development and forward march of the area.
Speaking at a grand durbar of Chiefs, Queen mothers and Elders to climax activities that marked the festival at Agbozume, the traditional capital on Saturday, November 25, Paramount Chief and President of the Somé Traditional Council,Torgbiga Adamah III, reiterated the need for peace, unity and fellow feeling among all indigenes of Somé, which he said was the surest way to turn things around for the area.
“Somé can only develop and take it’s rightful position among traditional authorities in Ghana if we put the past behind us and forge a path of unity and togetherness.
Let us avoid unnecessary squabbles and rancor which will only further divide us and retard our progress as one people from a common ancestry with a common destiny and purpose,” he said.
Torgbiga Adamah said, since he took office some eight years ago, the Paramountcy led by himself had been battling some chieftaincy issues which made it difficult for the area to move forward but “thanks to the Almighty God and the spirits of our ancestors, those issues have become a thing of the past and Somé is now more united and ready to face the future with hope.”
The Makorsor of Somé admonished the youth to shun social vices and unruly lifestyles which had the potential to ruin their future and to hold only to what was good and beneficial to society, as they are the future leaders who the society was looking up to to contribute meaningfully to nation building.
He decried the growing phenomenon where the younger generation now took to patronizing wake keepings and funerals every weekend at the expense of their studies and meaningful employment and called for a change in the status quo.
The Paramount Chief lamented the poor nature of roads in the area which also lacked proper drainage systems, leading to severe flooding during the rainy season, as witnessed this year by the displacement of families and the destruction of livelihoods as a result of the flooding and called on the authorities to prioritize the construction of the town roads in the entire Ketu South Municipality.
He further appealed to government to work on reconstructing the area’s deplorable markets to give them a facelift for a better outlook to improve upon trade and commercial activities in the area.
The Paramount Chief called on the Ministry of Trade and Industry as well as other relevant institutions to prioritize and revamp the Kente weaving industry at Agbozume, which he said was now on a downward trend due to the harsh economic realities facing the weavers and the high cost of weaving materials.
On education, Torgbiga Adamah said, the education of the population should be the priority of everyone as society can only advance faster with an educated population.
To this end, he assured of plans by the traditional authority to collaborate with relevant institutions to improve upon education in the area by instituting an Educational Fund to award scholarships to brilliant school children and to assist teachers in the area aquire further training to improve upon teaching and learning outcomes in the traditional area.
Torgbiga Adamah commended all well-meaning indigenes of Somé for their unflinching support for him and his elders over the years especially for their commitment and contributions towards a successful festival.
He called for “all hands on deck” in order to accelerate the socio-economic transformation of the traditional area.
Former President John Dramani Mahama led a delegation of National Democratic Congress (NDC) executives and Members of Parliament to grace the colourful festival.
Somé Tutu Za, was instituted in 1976, and is celebrated to mark the migration of the Somé people from Keta to their current location.
It is celebrated in November each year in all towns in the area.
However, it had not been commemorated since 2004 due to some chieftaincy-related issues and other challenges.
This year’s edition of the festival was seen as a conduit to unite, revive and redevelop the once vibrant and culturally rich area.
The festival is not only a period of joy and merrymaking, but also brings Somé citizens together to deliberate on matters affecting the traditional area and how to develop and improve the socio-economic well-being of the people.
It was celebrated on the theme: “Uniting all of Somé for her total development.”