SEKHUKHUNE – Tuesday 15 December 2020 marked the beginning of a firm footing for the prospected twinning relationship between the Kingdom of Bapedi in South Africa and the Ashanti Kingdom in Ghana. The delegation from Bapedi Kingdom was constituted by Prince Phatudi Thulare from the Royal House of King Thulare III and Mr Puleng Mmotla the Inventor of South Africa’s indigenous sporting code called TUPS. This royal delegation was warmly received by the High Commissioner of the Republic of Ghana in South Africa Her Excellency Khadija Iddrisu accompanied by the high ranking staff of the mission including the Political Concierge and Advisor on South African traditional affairs.
From the onset the High Commissioner expressed her support for the initiative by Bapedi Kingdom to reach out to fellow African Kingdoms in pursuit of similarities.
“After studying the background research of the Kotoko – Noko Twinning Relationship I found so much mind-boggling similarities between the Ashanti and Bapedi nations, and Kingdom. I knew that as government of the Republic of Ghana we have a role to play to help both Kingdoms and their peoples to thrive through shared vision, collaboration and the sense of initiative already expressed” said H.E Iddrisu
“If we don’t implement this twinning relationship to be best of our ability posterity won’t judge us right. We are embracing this programme to promote our culture because culture is a bed rock. Our societies are suffering from identity crisis because we have neglected our royal traditional leaders who are the core of our cultural heritage. I was excited that Bapedi Kingdom has adopted an indigenous sporting code (TUPS) as a tool for engaging citizens in glorifying their heritage. I am event more excited that TUPS sporting code will be introduced through mass scale activations in the Ghanaian society. By prioritizing indigenous games as one of the pillars of this royal twinning relationship we will be restoring and sustaining our heritage. We also have indigenous games in Ghana that are as old as humanity but they have never been developed to form part of the cultural esteem of the communities” added H.E Iddrisu
Expressing gratitude on behalf of Bapedi Kingdom Prince Phatudi Thulare handed gifts to the High Commission of Ghana in a form of a Bapedi Ancestral Flower. He further said the Bapedi Kingdom will arrange a special information sharing tour for Her Excellency and her staff on the 3rd weekend of January 2021. Places to be visited in Bapedi Kingdom include the Tšate Great Place (Headquarters of King Thulare III) and Tšate Heritage Site as well as communities where the TUPS indigenous game is played.
“We aim to host Her Excellency in Bopedi, Limpopo Province before the main tour by the Bapedi King to his counterpart Asantehene Osei Tutu II in order to ensure smooth sharing of information and depth of knowledge about Bapedi, from the High Commissioner’s own experience” explained Thulare
“There is a lot in common among the Bapedi and Ashanti Kingdoms, they even share the same totem or spirit animal – the porcupine (kotoko / nook) which is symbolically significant in the unification of Africans. For more information about the Kotoko – Noko Royal Friendship contact Prince Phetedi Thulare 078 765 9026.