1939-01-01, English, Article, Journal or magazine article edition: ASHANTI. (1 January 1939) Great Britain. Office of Commonwealth Relations.

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ASHANTI. (1 January 1939)
 
Bookmark: https://trove.nla.gov.au/version/260649589
Physical Description
  • 838 words
  • article
  • Journals
  • Magazines
Published
  • enk, Waterlow &​ Sons, Ltd., 1939-01-01
Language
  • English

Edition details

Title
  • ASHANTI. (1 January 1939)
Appears In
  • The Dominions Office and Colonial Office list for ..., no.1939, 1939-01-01
Author
  • Great Britain. Office of Commonwealth Relations.
Published
  • enk, Waterlow &​ Sons, Ltd., 1939-01-01
Physical Description
  • 838 words
  • article
  • Journals
  • Magazines
Part Of
  • The Dominions Office and Colonial Office list for ...
  • 1939
Subjects
Summary
  • ASHANTI. Ashanti is inhabited by a large number of confederated tribes, the principal of which are the Mampongs, Juabens, Bekwais, Adansis, Kokofus, Nsutas, Offinsus, Kumawus, Ejisus and Agonas. Each tribe has its own Head Chief, but from time immemorial the King of Kumasi was recognised as the King paramount of the Confederation. In 1873 the King of Ashanti invaded the British Protectorate with a large army, and reached Elmina, where he was entirely defeated by the British forces under Colonel (afterwards Sir) Francis Fes ting. Later in the year Captain (afterwards Sir) John Glover was sent to the eastern districts of the Protectorate to organise the tribes in that quarter, for a flank movement against the Ashanti territory. At the same time Sir Garnet (afterwards Viscount) Wolseley was despatched to the Gold Coast, with British and West Indian troops, native levies, and some seamen and marines, to operate against the Ashantis, starting from Cape Coast. On the 31st of January, 1874, he came into general engagement with the enemy at Amoaful, where he drove them from their position after desperate resistance. The next four days were employed continuously in fighting, until, on the evening of the 4th of February, the British force entered Kumasi. The King had fled to the bush. A few days later Sir John Glover also reached Kumasi. On the 13th, messengers sent by the King concluded a peace with Sir Garnet Wolseley at Fomena, which was afterwards signed with a pencil cross by King Kofi. By the Treaty of Fomena, the King of Ashanti renounced all claims on the claims on the Protectorate, promised to protect traders, to abandon human sacrifices, and to pay an indemnity of 50,000 ozs. of gold. In 1894 Prempeh, who was then King of Kumasi, and had successfully fought against the Nkoranzas, who had revolted against his rule, threatened to attack the Atebubus. This attack was averted by the despatch of a force under Sir Francis Scott, and an ultimatum was then sent to Prempeh warning him not to enter British territor} 7 , and suggesting that he should acquiesce in the establishment of a Residency at Kumasi. No definite reply to this suggestion could be obtained, and a military expedition accordingly proceeded to Kumasi, to compel compliance with the demands of Her Majesty’s Government. The expedition, under the command of Sir Francis Scott, entered Kumasi without resistance, January, 1896. Prempeh made submission, but, failing to comply with the terms dictated, was brought to the coast as a political prisoner and lodged in Elmina Castle, whence he was eventually deported to the Seychelles. A Resident was at the same time installed at Kumasi, and thus commenced an entirely new departure in the relations of the Gold Coast Colony with Ashanti. In 1900 the Governor visited Kumasi, and was there besieged by the Ashantis, the town being closely invested. Provisions ran short, and a part of the garrison, with the Governor, cut their way out; the rest were relieved by Colonel (afterwards Sir J.) YVillcocks, commanding the Ashanti Field Force,- on 15th July, after severe fighting. The Ashantis were subsequently thoroughly routed at Abuosu. An Order of the King in Council, dated September 26th, 1901, defined the boundaries of Ashanti, annexed it to His Majesty’s Dominions, and provided for its administration under the Governor of the Gold Coast. By a subsequent Order in Council of the 22nd of October, 1906, the boundaries between the Colony and Ashanti, and between Ashanti and the Northern Territories were re-ad j usted and defined, with due regard to tribal lands and natural features. Ashanti is administered by a Chief Commissioner with an Assistant Chief Commissioner as relieving Officer. The dependency is divided into the following Districts, each under a District Commissioner with limited powers of jurisdiction : Ashanti Akim District. Bekwai District. Kumasi District. Mampong District. Obuasi District. Sunyani District. Wenchi District. The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court was extended to Ashanti in 1935. The former Circuit Judge is now a Puisne Judge of the Supreme Court of which a Divisional Court has been established at Kumasi. A District Magistrate exercises limited jurisdiction in the town of Kumasi. The peaceful relations which, under the auspices of the Gold Coast Government, have existed for many years now between the Ashantis and the neighbouring tribes have been signified by not infrequent petitions emanating from the Gold Coast Colony as well as from Ashanti for the return from exile of Prempeh, the former Chief of Kumasi. The confidence felt by the Government of the Gold Coast in the loyalty of the Ashanti people led to the granting of this request in 1924, and to approval being given in 1926 of his election by his people as Omanhene or Head Chief of the Kuraasi tribe. Prempeh died on the 12 th May, 1931 and was succeeded by his nephew (now Sir) Osei Agyiman Prempeh II as Omanhene of Kumasi on the 7th July, 1931, who, on the restoration of the Ashanti Confederacy federacy in 1935, assumed the title of Asantehene.
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