Stray bullet kills 14-year-old during fire festival, 2 others injured at Aboabo

Reports indicate that one person has died in Aboabo in the Ashanti Region during a fire festival.

The deceased, said to be a 14-year-old is reported to have been hit by a stray bullet while celebrants displayed magical prowess.

Aside from the deceased, two other persons also sustained gunshot wounds, reports

Family of the deceased at the Kumasi Airport Police station

The descendants of the Mole-Dagbani Kingdom, which includes Mamprusis, Mossis, Dagombas, Nanumbas, and Gonjas, celebrate the fire (Bugum) festival every year with an outstanding exhibition of their rich cultural history.

The celebration, which is marked by chanting, dancing, musket firing, fire lighting, and a procession through the main towns, is a key historical event on the Mole-Dagbani lunar calendar.

According to legend, the festival was first observed after the son of a famous monarch in the ancient Mole-Dagbani Kingdom went missing and the entire town was sent out to look for him in the dark while singing and drumming.

The volunteers located the prince under a tree after a thorough search, and they brought him to the illustrious king’s palace. But the king was so shocked that he labelled the tree as wicked for stealing his son. The ‘evil tree’ was shamed by having everyone who assisted in the prince’s quest hurl their lit torches at it, and the king declared the following day a holiday. According to a different school of thinking, the annual event has its roots in Islam and is observed on the ninth night of Muha-ram, the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar and the start of the new year.

The victory of Prophet Moses over Pharaoh and God’s blessing on Prophet Noah for the easy passage of His ark are also supposed to be symbolized by the Bugum Festival.


People purchase animals during the festival period in order to appease their gods and bolster their supernatural abilities. Three days prior to the festival’s start, the celebrants begin their preparations.

On the day of the celebration, they assemble at the palace of the overlords and leaders where they watch them light the first thatch before joining in with the lighting of the fire. Finally, a thicket is used to dispose of the lit thatches.

Those unable to resist the gong-gong drums’ (ziem) deafening beating join the partygoers to dance into the night to their heart’s content.

Those who are unable to resist the gong-gong drums’ (ziem) deafening rhythm join the revellers to dance the night away while muskets and rockets are continuously fired.



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