Tatale, Ghana – The Paramount Chief of Tatale, Obore Yankosor, has officially launched the 2024 Bassare Yam Festival, calling on Bassares living outside the traditional area to actively participate in the upcoming celebrations. The festival, a longstanding cultural event celebrated for hundreds of years, is an integral part of the Bassare community’s heritage.
According to Ghana News Agency, the festival represents a vital connection to the past, bridging the gap between generations and providing a sense of direction and purpose. He lamented the decline in the observance of certain cultural rites and emphasized the importance of festivals like the Bassare Yam Festival in maintaining cultural identity. The festival offers an opportunity for Bassares, both within and outside Ghana, to reunite with their families and engage in the community’s development agenda.
The paramount chief highlighted the festival’s significance as a time to mark the end of the farming season and prepare for a new season of cultivating yams, the community’s staple crop. The celebration involves appeasing and pacifying the gods for a successful season, along with performing individual and clan sacrifices for sanctification and protection.
The 2024 festival is scheduled for September 14, with an annual durbar of chiefs planned for the second week of September each year. Obore Yankosor expressed that the festival would be a time to reflect on the community’s journey towards development, unity, and peace, acknowledging areas that need improvement and strengths to be sustained. The celebration also symbolizes victory over famine, known locally as ‘likpaasil’.
A committee will be formed to prepare for the festival, as announced by the chief in his closing remarks. Mr. Henry Mbini, who chaired the launching event, spoke of the festival’s potential to attract development by inviting investors, politicians, NGOs, and others to join the celebrations. He emphasized the importance of yam farming in Tatale, urging farmers to adopt modern agricultural practices for increased production and to avoid indiscriminate bush burning that could damage crops during the dry season.
The event was attended by various chiefs, including Obore Kwawai Simon – Lakpale, Obore Kojo Magalo Sheini, Queen Mother of Tatale Yaa Mbola, Ali Jimba Bekanbanbi, Obore Poku Ngariba Bebubagbu Sogloo – Bore Kpante Batube, among others.