There was a blend of tradition and modernity during the performance of “Puberty rites” in Ekumfi Abor in the Central region, in a way that seek to maintain traditions that remain relevant in today’s modern society and cultural setup.
On the occasion, eligible young women were dressed in beautiful Kente clothes, adorned with make-up, best of African beads, hair scarfs, headgear weaved with three hair scarfs, and Ahenmaa (traditional sandals); and paraded through the streets of the town amid fromtonfrom (drumming) and dancing, to mark their entry into womanhood.
The event took place during the maiden “Home-coming” an initiative put together by the Chief of the town Nana Amoasi VII and his elders to bring home indigenes of the town, far and near, to raise funds to support the development of their community.
Nana Amoasi VII who doubles as the Ankobeahen (Chief of Staff) of Ekumfi Traditional Area and his elders hold in high esteem Puberty rites, a medium to prepare younger women physically, mentally and emotionally into womanhood. It is seen as a way to forestall teenage pregnancy and unwelcome babies, due to the protocols the young women are exposed to during the event. . . Prominence is given to this tradition because it exposes the younger women who have had their menstruation and kept their virginity, to good morals, self confidence, traditional values, and more importantly, what lay ahead of them as potential mothers and leaders. It is done to protect the young women from immoral activities that may harm their future.
Prior to the Saturday, the 17 young women who participated had been camped for some days and taken through rigorous lessons in cultural values, sex education, personal hygiene, etiquette for girls, and relationship management etc. by the Queen mother Nana Araba Arhinfuwa III, the Gyasehemaa Nana Takyie-Enu III, and some female opinion leaders.
Parents of the young women who participated in the event were integrated into the teaching and learning process to help build that needed bridge, understanding and respect among them and their wards.
At a Durbar to crown the event, the girls competed for honours based on their dancing, respect and popularity in the community. They received variety of items such as Sewing machine, cloths, and sauce pans as gifts.
Aside each participant receiving an undisclosed gift, Nana Amoasi VII and Mr. Albert Abaho who represent indigenes of Abor resident in the UK and US pledged to support them in their future educational needs.