Ngmayem Festival

Ngmayem Festival

March; in some areas October
The Ngmayem Festival is a harvest celebration that takes place in March in Manya Krobo in southeastern Ghana. The festival has been held annually since 1944 to foster tribal unity, but it commemorates the end of a famine that occurred hundred of years ago.
The festival derives its name from the historic importance of ngma, or millet, to the survival of the tribe, though that grain now is cultivated mainly for ritual purposes. Traditional foods associated with Ngmayem include mashed yam, palm soup, roasted corn, and meal. Festivities and rites are planned throughout the harvest month, and these may include dances, marriages, naming ceremonies, and other rituals designed to strengthen relationships and allegiances within the tribe. Events during the main festival week include blessings, cleansing ceremonies, thanksgiving services, visitation of royal tombs, and commemoration of ancestors. Festivalgoers dress in colorful attire and adorn themselves with beads.
Krobo leaders also conduct a durbar, or court reception, in which tribe members meet with chiefs to discuss the government and administration of the group and to hear updates on development projects and political issues affecting the people, such as water rights and border disputes. Beginning in the 2000s, a Ngmayem Festival was also celebrated annually in October in Dodowa to celebrate the harvest, foster tribal unity, and educate younger generations about their history.
CONTACTS:
National Commission on Culture
1 Gamal Abdul Nasser Ave.
Private Mail Bag
Ministries Post Office
Accra, Ghana
www.ghanaculture.gov.gh