Anyenum Kwame Ampene, 91, founder of the Guan Congress and a regular columnist of The Spectator newspaper, will be laid to rest at Boso on Saturday, 18th April, 2015.
This will be preceded by funeraly rites at the Forecourt of the State House in Accra on that same day, Saturday, 18th April 2015.
Ampene who was born at Boso on 26th July 1924 was a former tutor of Agogo Training College, Abuakwa State College and Breman Asikuma Secondary School. He attended Akropong Training College, and was awarded a scholarship to study music at Winneba Specialist Training College in 1964. From 1968-1971, he enrolled at the University of Ghana for further studies in music.
He was a prolific writer who took great pride and interest in the oral historical traditions of his people. His multifaceted writing touched on a variety of topics which were all based on our traditions and culture.
Ampene published Atetesem in 1978 and from 2009 until he joined his ancestors on February 12th, 2015, he was a columnist for the then Weekly Spectator, now, The Spectator — “Know the Origin of Towns.”
He vigorously contributed to the debate on the issues involving new church music compositions in the Ghanaian (African) idiom, and published his opinion in the erstwhile Radio & TV Times and Christian Messenger in the late sixties and seventies.
Ampene launched the Guan Socio-Cultural Renaissance in 1981 with a core group of village elders at Ajumako-Boso. His primary vision was to help provide a single platform and singular identity for the twenty-eight Guan speaking communities in Ghana.
In his autobiography 1924-2015, he notes: “This is a sober reflection of the life of someone who dedicated himself to project oral historical traditions, customs and festivals that the signs and honour of a nation is enshrined; These traditions remind us that we have a past, and that whatever we are today and hope to be in the future had a distinct link with the past”.
He accomplished his goals through a series of symposia at the University of Ghana, several delegates’ conferences and congresses at the district, regional and national levels. A greatly loved teacher, he counted among his students CEOs of some of the nation’s best-run companies. He was the primary mentor of 40 doctoral students who have gone on to successful academic careers.
He travelled the length and breadth of the country in addition to undertaking a study tour of neighbouring Togo, Benin, and the Ivory Coast. He achieved this level of success with support from individuals in the Guan community who encouraged him and where possible provided funding for his trips.
One of his daughter’s, Dr. Afia Ansaa Ampene, Producer of the Mmaa Nkomo show said: “My dad may physically not be here on earth with us, however his lifetime accomplishment will continue to yield fruit to nourish generations in perpetuity.“
Another of his children, Professor Kwasi Ampene, Director, Center for World Performance Studies (CWPS) of the University of Michigan, notes: “He was a trailblazer, deepening and expanding collaboration across societies. His work brought together outstanding individuals from many different academic disciplines and is an inspiration to his students, colleagues and society”.
He is survived by 11 children and many grandchildren and great-grand children.
His body will be taken to Boso for burial after a ceremony that will include a cultural display, poetry recitals and reading of tributes.
A Thanksgiving Service will take place at the Tema Joint Church Community 7 on Sunday, 19th April, 2015 to be followed by the final funeral rites at Crystal Palace Grounds.
TRIBUTE TO THE MEMORY OF THE LATE OYOKO AKOMFI DEHYE KWAME AMPENE
By Boso Guanman
IT is two people, man and woman, who give birth to one person. The two work hard to bring that person up. But somewhere upon the stage, the right of ownership over that person is lost to the two and the person becomes a national asset. More so when the individual works to reach the top of his chosen career.
So it was with Odehye Kwame Ampene. He was born “Abosonibi,” grew up “Abosombi,” but somewhere along the line, Kwame Ampene shed off his limited “Abosanibi” nature and assumed a larger “Agumani” role. He worked hard and travelled extensively to research into Guan history and location in present-day Ghana and West Africa.
When Kwame became engulfed in the affairs of greater Guan, we seemed to have lost him. Our day of glory came when he caused the Second Guan Congress to be staged at Boso. Both the economic and social gains that accrued to Boso from the congress was beyond our expectation. That congress put Boso on a high pedestral. People from far and near who neither knew nor had heard of Boso came down to see the beautiful valley town. The hospitality of the people coupled with their love for others was displayed for the numerous brothers and sisters who graced the occasion to see.
One group of Guans who had an indelible mark on their lives after the congress were the Gonjas who became stranded after the congress. For well over one week, our brothers and sisters stayed with us. Some joined us to our farms to collect foodstuff and some firewood for their meals. Kwame, you were responsible for all this.
Your demise is a blow to us and we will forever remember you.
Due ne Amanehunu!!