The President of the Ga Traditional Council, Nii Adote Obuor II, has stated categorically that the beating of the “Odadao Drums” to lift the ban on drumming and noisemaking was the prerogative of the Ga Mantse which must be performed on a Wednesday and not Thursday.
Quoting from the “Omanye Aba” book authored by A. A. Amartey, which codified the Ga tradition and history, Nii Obuor II said the Ga Mantse in the past performed this duty on a Wednesday. This role was later delegated to the Gbese Mantse (Linguist to the Ga Mantse) who began performing it on a Thursday.
He said before the Gbese Mantse performed the duty, he first went to the Ga Mantse with drinks to beg for the official drum sticks and afterwards returned the sticks with drinks to show appreciation to the king.
The Traditional Council's President was explaining the Ga customs to a large gathering of the people of Ga State at James Town in Accra who thronged the Amugi Naa, Mogya We to witness this year's beating of the “Odadao Drums” to lift the ban on drumming which was performed by King Tackie Tawiah III, the new Ga Mantse.
Nii Obuor II said, however, that the decision to allow King Tackie Tawiah to perform his rightful duty on Wednesday was reached mainly because of the chieftaincy problem within the Gbese Clan.
The ceremony, which was witnessed by members of the Ga Traditional Council, the Greater Accra Regional Minister, Sheikh I. C Quaye and the Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Mr Stanley Adjiri Blanskon, was characterised by skirmishes between the police and a group of irate youth who wanted to halt the ceremony.
Seven people including a woman were arrested in the process.
Properties were destroyed and some police vehicles had their windscreen smashed with some personnel sustaining minor injuries.