The Slippery Paths of Commemoration and Heritage Tourism: The History of Gomoa Nsuaem and Its Slave Route


Ofosu-Mensah Emmanuel Ababio – University of Ghana, Legon, Accra, Greater Accra, Ghana, West Africa

Series: Political Science and History
BISAC: HIS001050; SOC054000; BUS081000

Oral histories from the Fante and Gomoa peoples confirmed that their forefathers lived in Takyiman, in what is now Ghana’s Bono East Region, before migrating to their current settlements in the Central Region. After many years in Mankessim, the latter immigrants were forced to relocate eastwards due to population growth and other circumstances. This eastward journey brought the Gomoa people to their new village behind the Kwesi- Nakwa River, which they named Gomoa-man-mu. After a period of time at Gomoa-man-mu, and as a result of overcrowding and inadequate land for farming, some of the Gomoa desired new settlements. Oral tradition has it that, Akodeℇ Akwatsia (a short old man) also known as Nana Kwaku Akwatsia, which was later corrupted as Kwaakwatsia from Twidan (Bretuo) clan, an herbalist and hunter from Kyiren, continued their migration in search of a river body, fertile land and a forest to fish, farm and hunt respectively. He wandered to find a suitable place for settlement and eventually built a community named after him as Kwaakwatsia in 1676.

Kwaakwatsia or Gomoa Nsuaem was founded on a vantage point and became a popular township where the slave route from the Northern and Eastern regions of the Gold Coast (Ghana), passed through. Running from Ayensuadze to Tekyiam is the slave route, known as the “Asamandze Road.” The Atweonye Mu Road (waiting ground), is located on the route to Tekyiam. The slaves were allowed to rest or wait here before traveling on to Winneba. Slaves were transported from Atweonye mu to Winneba through Gomoa Mampon. In addition, the Asamandze road also served as an entry point to Agona Kwanyako. This path has been preserved and embedded in native folklore as a slave route upon which slaves trudged en route to fort Winneba.

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