PHOTOS: New Manhyia auditorium named after Otumfuo commissioned

The magnificent traditional yet ultramodern Otumfuo Osei Tutu II Jubilee Hall has been commissioned for operation inside the Manhyia Palace in Kumasi in the Ashanti Region.

The ribbon-cutting event held at the Palace on Monday, April 15, 2024, was attended by dignitaries including the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, his wife, Lady Julia Osei Tutu, the Ashanti Regional Minister, Simon Osei Mensah and the General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the Central Command, Brigadier General Michael Opoku.

Also present were the Ashanti Regional Police Commander, ACP Frank Abrokwa; the Member of Parliament of Sakassou Constituency in Cote d’Ivoire, Hon Mansa Ndia; the Managing Director of Ghana Post Company Limited, Bice Obour Osei- Kuffour; clergymen; and traditional authorities.

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The dedication of the building was jointly honoured by the Archbishop of the Catholic Church in Kumasi, Rt Rev Gabriel Justice Ankokye and the Archbishop of the Anglican Church in Kumasi, Rt Rev Oscar Christian Amoah.


The unveiling of the name of the building was conducted by the Juabenhene Nana Otuo Serebuo II with the official ribbon-cutting to mark the official opening of the facility done by Her Royal Highness Lady Julia.

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Composition
The facility is fitted with a cocktail lounge, offices, a 2000-capacity fully air-conditioned and acoustically designed hall, about 60 washrooms, a parking lot, and a state-of-the-art kitchen.

Addressing the gathering, Juabenhene said the entire building though modern, was constructed to model a traditional home setting where one is greeted by a hallway with a water pot sitting in one corner for thirsty visitors to quench their thirst.


“In a similar fashion, we have a cocktail lounge with a capacity of 400 people where visitors can refresh themselves with water, other drinks and food. The hallway surrounds the main hall and also leads to a conference hall with a capacity of 40. Meanwhile, the main hall is the same as the Great Hall at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) fitted with central air-conditioning.”

The facility is also unified with a 150-capacity car park and a compound.

Anyone who makes his/her way into the building will be welcomed by a wall with intricate detailing of traditional designs. On the wall include a three-dimensioned replica of the Golden Stool, a man playing the talking drum and the various Adinkra symbols.


Purpose
The building, Nana Juabenhene noted, will host private Asanteman meetings, get-togethers, symposiums, cultural performances, and other events.

Naming
Delving into the inspiration behind the name of the building, Juabenhene said it is meant to immortalize the legacy of the King in the next generations.


“The construction of the building was done inconspicuously. His Majesty informed me about it when I was elected to chair the 25th Anniversary Planning Committee and brought me here to see it. I later met the members of the Committee to jaw-jaw to request that it be named after him. This will be a remarkable legacy to his name forever. This is one of the many things His Majesty has done and the next generations will come to meet the building with his name and the fact that it is taking place during his Silver Jubilee.”

Juabenhene noted that Otumfuo was entitled per tradition to mobilize funds for the construction of the edifice from all traditional authorities in his realm; however, he saved them the burden by taking full responsibility. This, he said, beholden traditional authorities to Otumfuo.

“Just as JF Kennedy said, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country’, what traditional authorities can do to thank Otumfuo is to follow his footsteps by initiating projects that benefit their communities and towns to leave for themselves legacies.”

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