My name is Olawale Okunrinboye aka Prince of KEMET aka Omo - Oduduwa aka Ashewaju of Yorubaland aka Nagarjuna. Addicted to everything about the Ancient world except the religions. Socialist to the fullest. Writing is my thing. Got so much LOVE FOR black people and humanity as a whole
NORMS AND VALUES
Like most African countries full of numerous ethnic groups, cultures, norms and values; Ghana isn’t an exception. This is because Ghana like other African countries is an European creation of the 19th to early 20th century ‘what is now central and northern Ghana were annexed to the colony only in 1902, while the interior to the east of what is now Lake Volta, part of German Togoland before the World War 1, was formally mandated to Britain by the League of Nation only in 1919’ Briggs P 2010 p 4. In other words, Ethnic groups that were independent of each other rule or under a single ethnic group’s empire were all amalgamated together. According to Conrad, one of the national volunteers, Ghana has a total of 49 ethnic groups and within those 49 are the 9 major ethnic groups. So also, there are 81 languages spoken in Ghana but out of those 81, 9 are government sponsored languages. The 9 sponsored languages are those spoken by the major ethnic groups. As of now, this is the only information I have about the ethnic groups in here but as I get more information I will give an update in my next postings.
Before we left Tamale for Bolgatanga (Bolga) which is where some of us the IS volunteers will be doing our placement, the national volunteers took us through the norms and values of the Ghanaian people as a whole. Bolga is in the Upper East Region of Ghana, a sub-division of the Northern Sector. The tribe is Frafra and the language they speak is called Grune. First and foremost, one must note that, Ghanaians hold a high esteem for their traditional rulers, chiefs and elders (‘elders’ in this context means an ordinary old person walking down the road). As we are foreigners, we will be taken to the traditional ruler’s palace to show respect and interact with him.
The nationwide etiquette is, it is wrong to eat or drink with you left hand or give something to an older people with your left hand. I was quick to learn that Ghanaians are conservative and have stock to their tradition, well as far as I know the Northern part of Ghana.
AKWAABA! (WELCOME) BROTHER – INDUCTION WEEK
It was expected of us the volunteers, to have done some concrete research on Ghana. As a politics student, I decided to look into the political structure and the government. So therefore, it was from my research that I found out about the imbalance development between the Southern region and the Northern region. The seat of government is in Accra, which is a city in the south could be one of the reasons why the south is more developed than the north. One could also say that, it is also deeply rooted in colonialism. Before the British moved inland, they lived in the coastal areas of the south just before colonisation was in full effect on the people of Ghana. This is one of the reasons why there is a big gap between the developed south and the not so developed North. One more thing, the south has a vast deposit of natural resources whereas the north with little or no natural resources must look for other means to cater for itself and this is one, if not the major reason why the International Service (IS) volunteers are here in Northern Ghana
I learnt that there are a lot of charity organisations here in the north, just in the same enclosure that the ICS team is having their induction week; we have other volunteers from the United States.
That been said, I am just so impressed on how peaceful and welcoming the people of Ghana are, it also seems more organised than expected maybe it is because we are in Tamale, the northern region’s capital but if so, after taking a 16 hours bus-travel from Accra to Tamale, I can sincerely say, Ghana is a safe place to transport goods or people from one location to another. The majority of the roads, I saw are smooth and well maintained. The other 30% are under construction. In addition to that, there were police checks in approximately every hour travel from the last one so also, the necessary road signs were put in place to ensure a safe journey through.
This is my first observation on Ghana, more to come within my 12 weeks here