The third-largest among the sixteen administrative Regions in Ghana is blatantly the Ashanti Region which corollary has the largest population of over 4.6 million inhabitants attributed to different ethnic groups across the country. It covers a total land surface of 24,389 Kilometer Square (9,417sq m) representing 10.2% of the total land area in Ghana. The Largest city in Ghana, Kumasi is the administrative Regional Capital of the Ashanti Region.
The region which is centrally located within the country shares boundaries with six of the sixteen regions with its Northern part being boarded by Bono, Bono East, and Ahafo Region, Eastern Region is to the East, Central Region to the South and to the South West by Western Region.
Akans are the predominant ethnic group in the Region representing about 94.2% of citizens by birth with a smaller percentage of about 5.8% originating from outside the Akanland.
Ashanti Region serves as the major hub for the production of Gold and Cocoa in Ghana and beyond.
The elaborative succinctness of the Ashanti Region cannot be complete without its distinct History and Culture. The Great Ashanti Kingdom is unequivocally the traditional heartland of Ghana. A kingdom that is having absolute monarch with its current ruler to be Otumfour Osei Tutu II, Asantehene.
Artisanry and crafty articulacy been the mantra brooded on by the Region vindicate itself overtly with the likes of Bonwire Kente weaving, Pankrono Pottery making, Ahwia wood carvings, Ntonso Adinkra Clothes making coupled with Goldsmith and Silversmith Services.
Bonwire Kente weaving. Image / ghana.for91days.com
Tourism in the Ashanti Region
Tourists visiting the Legendary Asante Kingdom will undoubtedly appreciate the exquisite exhibition of famous historical sites such as the Manhyia Palace Museum (the palace of Asantehene Otumfour Osei Tutu II) which tends to exhibit ancient relics of the Asante descendants, with Okomfo Anokye Sword Site and others serving similar purposes.
The Center For National Culture situated within the ancient Capital, Kumasi is filled with almost all the cultural artifacts in the country. It has the local name as the “Amamerɛ Fie” meaning “Home of rich Culture”. Other sites like the Prempeh II Jubilee Museum, Kumasi Fort and Military Museum, Kumasi Zoo, Owabi Forest Reserve and Bird Sanctuary, and many more. Lake Bosomtwe being the only Natural Lake in Ghana can be found in the Ashanti Region.
Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu 2 – Asantehene
The Ashanti Festivals
The greatest and frequently celebrated ceremony of the Asantes is called the “Adae”, which is to recall the spirit of departed rulers with an offering of food and drinks, asking their favor for the common good. They have the Akwasidae and Adae Kese.
Another large ceremony which is celebrated in September every year is the Odwira Festival. This is the time of the cleansing of the sin of a society defilement and the purification of shrines of ancestors and the gods. other festivals include the Papa Festival, Kente Festival, Yaa Asantewaa Festival, etc.
Funerals are spectacular events in Ashanti Region usually held on Saturday, amidst a display of drumming, dancing, and pageantry, often with thousand mourners in traditional red and black. Education in Ashanti Region is unrivaled comparably with the rest of the sixteen administrative regions in Ghana.
Akwasidae Festival is celebrated by the Ashanti people and chiefs in the Ashanti Region. Ashantis in the diaspora also celebrate this festival which comes on a Sunday, once every six weeks
The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is rated among the best universities in the world creating many exploratory fields of studies to many young individuals from many diversities. Tertiary Institutions such as Kumasi Technical University and other Private Universities are equally present in the region. Training Colleges abound in the region which helps in facilitating the nurturing of Teachers and Nurses in the World.
Attaining the highest quality of education during the secondary level is assured within the region with the affirmation of the first-class schools such as Prempeh College, Opoku Ware Senior High, St.Lious Senior High School, Yaa Asantewaa Senior High School, Kumasi High School, Konongo Senior High School and many more which are also among best in West Africa.
Any wonder then, as it is regarded as the region with the most famous and highly esteemed notable men Ghana has ever produced with the likes of General I.K Acheampong, General Akwasi Amankwah Afrifa, all former head of state, Kofi Annan, former UN General Secretary, H.E John Agyekum Kuffour, former President of Ghana, with sports and entertainment personalities such as Samuel Opoku Nti, Abdul Karim Tanko Razak, Kwasi Appiah, Daddy Lumba, Amakye Dede and many more.
The region has a robust health system with facilities such as the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, SDA Hospital Kwadaso, and many more.