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KING MSWATI HOSTS AYORKOR BOTCHWEY AT GRAND FESTIVAL

Ghana’s foreign minister, Shirley A. Botchwey, was a special guest of King Mswati III of Eswatini, at the annual Buganu festival commemorating the Marula fruit harvest, one of the biggest events of the southern African kingdom’s national calendar.

The event in a large royal arena, featured over 30,000 dancing and singing women leaders, known as “Lushango”, who serve as torchbearers of Swazi culture, and ensure traditional knowledge and practices are passed on to younger generations.

King Mswati presided over the ceremony at Hlane, 95 km south-west of the capital, Mbabane, with their revered Queen Mother Ntfombi Tfwala, seated on the dais alongside Madam Botchwey who was dressed in the orange celebratory bare-shoulder “Lihiya” attire.

The 55-year-old King also held in-camera bilateral discussions with Madam Botchwey and hosted a banquet for her and dignitaries at his palace at Hlane.

She also delivered a special message from President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo.

“We’re happy that we’ve been joined today by women from other African countries; Africa has always been led by culture,” King Mswati said in an address delivered solely in siSwati, one of the country’s national languages.

He said International Women’s Day (commemorated worldwide on March 8) “is a recognition of the role of women in societies.”

Madam Botchwey and the Eswatini foreign minister, Madam Pholile Dlamini-Shakantu, also joined the Lushango in the celebratory dance in the flood-lit arena.

The Marula fruit, centre-piece of the festival, is the source of the Swazi staple Buganu alcoholic beverage. It is also the fruit from which the creamy alcoholic drink, “Amarula” is distilled.

 

 

 

 

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