Kofi Annan, Lennox Lewis the Toast of September: Kofi Annan and Lennox Lewis Came Home to Be Feted, and September Suddenly Turned out to Be a Jolly Good Month in Accra. (around Africa: Ghana)

By Mensah, Kwadwo | New African, October 2002 | Go to article overview

Kofi Annan, Lennox Lewis the Toast of September: Kofi Annan and Lennox Lewis Came Home to Be Feted, and September Suddenly Turned out to Be a Jolly Good Month in Accra. (around Africa: Ghana)


Mensah, Kwadwo, New African


September was a good month for Ghana if "good" can be defined as a flurry of activity that brought home Kofi Annan, the UN secretary general, to be followed by the world heavyweight boxing champion, Lennox Lewis, and a 40-strong contingent that included his mother, Violet Blake, and the lively Don King, the famous boxing promoter.

Even the government chipped in by announcing that its decision in March last year to go HIPC (Highly Indebted Poor Country), had starred bearing fruits. Accordingly, it released 117 billion cedis of HIPC funds into the economy in August for development projects.

Annan, a Fanti from the coast, found time from the war talk in New York to come home and receive an honour from Asanteman (the Asante nation) at a colourful ceremony in Kumasi.

Conferring the honour on him, the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, told the UN chief: "I and the entire Asanteman have decided to add your name to the Busumuru title because of your selflessness and contribution to humanity and the promotion of peace throughout the world." The Asantehene then placed a huge gold necklace (the symbol of the Busumuru around Annan's neck. It was followed by a crescendo of traditional drumming and dancing. The Busumuru is the golden sword used by Asante kings to swear the oath of allegiance to Asanteman. Annan was the first to receive the title since the formation of the Asante Kingdom in 1680. …

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