Kroboland and Its People-History

Our Krobo history is a story of great struggle, perseverance and resilience. Our ancestors defied all odds to survive from the hands of wicked rulers, tribes and governments. Even when other tribes were conquered in the midst of great wars and massacres, our Krobo (Dangme) Ancestors, through toil and sweat, managed to survive. Krobos….Niin3, Mawu k3 w) ng3!!!! Be proud that you are a Krobo, and a Dangme at large!!

Kroboland is bordered on the East by the River Volta and the N)w3yo [N)w3] mountain. On the West is the Lorlorvor Mountain, the Zanid) stream forms the Southern limit, and the Okwe stream borders us on the North..

The Krobo are part of a larger group of people known as the Dangme. The Dangme are all one people consisting of the Krobo, Ada, Shai (s3), Prampram (Gbugbla), Ningo, Kpom and Osudoku. The Dangme trace their origins “from the near East”, from somewhere in, or near the location where the Yoruba now live in NIGERIA (Azu, 1927). However, contemporary research backed strongly by our Klama musical lyrics documents that the Dangme before settling in Nigeria, migrated from ISRAEL THROUGH EGYPT AND SOUTHERN SUDAN, SETTLING FOR A PERIOD OF TIME AT SAMEH IN NIGER BEOFRE FINALLY REACHING ILE IFE IN NIGERIA.

In the heat of the great wars and massacres, and the need to survive at all cost, the Dangme migrated again to Dahomey (now Benin) in the year 1100 A.D. That was not the end, the Dangme had to migrate again through a land called Zungu (Zungeru, Zunguland). The hostile Zungu king called Zungmlugmu, demanded the payment of a sum of money before he will allow them passage through his land. The Krobo priestess called KROW3KI got her people around this difficulty by singing a ditty in praise of the King. The words of the song are “Opete Zungmlungmu, mo ngme zu he, se mo ji zu ts3… 3x” (Benefactor Zungmlungmu, release the land, for you are the master of the land… 3x). This beautiful song pleased the King so much, and he gladly created a gateway, and the Dangmes migrated to Huatsi in Togoland where they stayed for a short time (Odonkor, 1976).

As normal with any migration movement, there are isolated groups of Dangmes left behind along all these migration routes due to fatigue, sickness, and the fear of death on foreign lands. Consequently, as we speak today, we have pure Dangmes who speak pure Dangme and perform the Dipo rite in countries like Benin, Togo (in towns such as Tsamla, Kpesi, Atakpameh), and Agotimeh-Kpetoe in the Volta Region of Ghana.

Once again, the wars and slave trade raiding activities were too many. Our ancestors migrated again From Huatsi and travelled through the Eastern banks of the River Volta, originally named ‘J)’. They managed to cross the volta at a place between Old Kpong and Akuse, establishing settlements on the plains of the TAGOLOGO where they remained until 1200 A.D. They later migrated to the plains of Lorlorvor, between the Lorlorvor and Osudoku Hills. At Lorlorvor, due to conflicts and warfare, the once united Dangme splitted into 7 different tribes as indicated above. Lorlorvor means “Brotherly love is finished” signifying the breaking of the ties of unity (Wilson, 1992).
There were then no roads, and it was difficult to move about, but the Krobo tribe, setting out like a wandering band of explorers, pressed on towards the West. Our ancestors finally emerged into the plain around the Krobo Mountain. Here, the fetish-priest and fetish priestess commissioned TWO LEADING HUNTERS- Moase and Madza- to go in advance and explore the mountain to ascertain its suitability for settlement. The report they brought was favourable, and so the Krobos ascended to the mountain and took up permanent settlement there. In the course of time, our ancestors ritually admitted several Akan and Ewe immigrants onto the mountain, an action which doubled up the population on the mountain, and splitted the Krobo into Manya and Yilo sub-tribes.

The Krobos, once on the mountain, were able to withstand repeated attacks from several hostile tribes until 1892, when the British Colonial Government forcefully evicted us bag and baggage from the mountain to settle in our present settlements. There is more on this history, let us continue in the Comments segments. See you there…..

*************Our ancestors have struggled and toiled to bring Kroboland this far. Now that we know where we came from, lets us double our steps and move forward as one Krobo nation. Posterity will judge us one day, if we these young- scientific- facebook generation of Krobos sit on unconcern and allow Kroboland to continue to sink into the abyss. Clearly, all is not well with Kroboland and we must not pretend. It is about time we re-strategise and change our ways of doing things. It is about time our leaders sit up and deliver as expected of them. It is about time Krobo youth take their education seriously- there is too much entertainment, fun and “chilling” in Kroboland and these must cease with immediate effect!

We must put a stop to the character assassinations and backbiting that are rearing their ugly heads on our land, and also stop fighting ourselves as a Krobo nation. The Pull him/her Down (PhD) Phenomenon is not taking us anywhere and must be stopped. Our enemies as a Krobo nation are not we the Krobo people ourselves, or Groups that have been formed in Kroboland, or any Manya and Yilo Divisions—our enemies as a Krobo nation are the galloping rates of unemployment, illiteracy, disease, hunger, corruption and certain negative social tags that have been labeled on us. These are the challenges and phenomena we must come together and fight as a Krobo nation.

KLOMA HENGME as a group hopes that, this year’s Ngmayem and Kloyosikplem festivals will bring the curtain down on the OLD KROBO, AND USHER IN A NEW ERA WHERE HONEY AND MANNA WILL FLOW ON OUR LAND. We are sure of this conviction, because KROBOLAND….Mawu k3 w) ng3 niin3 (God is really with us)!!!
OKLIBONE!! KPANYAMU)!! OGUY)KITI!!! DASEAMELE!!!…..Jeha n3 ya, n3 e kpale bana w) ekohu!!!!

Source: Kloma Hengme Heritage Archives

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