Hogbetsotso Festival

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Hogbetsotso Festival
The Anlo Ewes, an ethnic group on the eastern coast of Ghana, are believed to have settled in Notsie in Togo when they first migrated from Southern Sudan.

Legend has it that they escaped from the tyrannical ruler of Notsie, Ago-Koli, by walking backwards.

In order to commemorate the exodus and the bravery of their traditional rulers who led them on the journey, the people created this annual Festival of the Exodus. There are many ceremonies associated with the festival, including a peace-making period where all outstanding problems are supposed to be resolved.

This is a purification ceremony of the traditional stool and a period of general cleaning when the villages are swept and rubbish burnt. This cleaning ceremony begins at the Volta Estuary and goes on for days until it finally reaches the Mono River in the Republic of Benin.

An essential aspect of the festival is a durbar of Chiefs and the people. Chiefs dress in very colouful regalia and sit in state to receive homage from their subjects.

Dancing, singing and general merry-making go on throughout the festival. The main durbars always take place on the first Saturday of November in Anloga, 15km west of Keta, a two and half hour drive from Accra.


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