H.B.K. Ogbete, A history of the Akpafus

One of the most interesting sources on the history and customs of the Mawu people of eastern Ghana (also known as the Akpafu) is a little book written in 1998 by Rev. H.B.K. Ogbete. This book contains a wealth of material: it records oral traditions, names of ancestors and chiefs, and a lot of background information on the culture of the Mawu. However, it is very difficult to find. Therefore, by popular demand, and with the permission of Prof. Kofi Agawu of Princeton University (who was involved in the publication of the book), I am making available a digital copy of it here.

Download it here: A history of the Akpafus (PDF, 2.5Mb)


  1. Ogbete, H. B. K. 1998. A history of the Akpafus. Onyase Press Limited.  

21 thoughts on “H.B.K. Ogbete, A history of the Akpafus”

  1. Thanks this is very educative I am most grateful I now know the history of my roots

  2. Hi Mark thanks for letting me know the history of my root. In fact i met you at mempeasem about three years back during the late”NANA YAW BEDU’S funeral speaking our local dialet “siwu” better than sum of us from the town.you have opened our eyes to the four cardinal points of Akpafu and “Kawu” as a whole. i still have your address you gave me max plank institute for psycho-linguistics.
    thanks for this history.

  3. I am from Akpafu Odomi.Yet to download and read ‘A History of the Akpafus’ I’m however grateful for your unflinching commitment to development of arts in Akpafu as well as the positive publicity you have given my community in recent times.My academic interest is in African Literature in English.I’m thinking of researching into the ‘Oral Traditions’ of this community for my PhD thesis.Any suggestions from you on the above subject is welcome. Hope to hear favourably from you soon. Stay healthy .Loya mi ordudu.

  4. Lo yɔ, Arikɔ Tɛtɛ Godswill! I am thankful that you find the material here of use.

    I would absolutely encourage you to research the oral traditions of your own people! Ogbete’s book is great, but incomplete, and I am very sure that elderly people in Odomi also have their stories to tell. My advise would be to let them tell the traditions in Siwu while you record them on video. They will be more comfortable speaking Siwu than any other language, and it is important that their stories are recorded and archived. You could later translate these recordings and work on them for your thesis, comparing different versions of the oral traditions and documenting new facts. As you can see your idea excites me. I will contact you by email to exchange more information.

    Lo ya mi ɔdudu!

  5. Was delighted to download the book. I look forward to reading it. Its a good thing to make it available.

  6. Lo ya mi. I’m overwhelmed by the information that’s available about my people and our history. Thanks so much for making this accessible to us all. I’m reading the book and enjoying every word of it.

  7. very great most Akpafus do not know their history some say the Akpafus are Asantes please clear my mind on that.Hope to hear from you

  8. Greetings my wife is from mempeasem and i am learning the language and trying to find info on the history of the Akpafus. I have just coem across this thesis and am grateful for the owrk you have done here.

    If there is any other books / info on the Akpafu’s i would be grateful if you could alrt or point me in the direction.

    Best regards


  9. Hi Kofi, great idea to learn the language! I can recommend a Siwu Language Learning Course, which I’ll send to you by email. You can find more stuff about Akpafu history on my blog here. There is also an “I Love Akpafu” group on Facebook where there are many helpful folks.

    More history: A visit to Akpafu by David Asante, 1887

  10. Every time I try to download the “A history of the Akpafus” it says the file is not a pdf or it is corrupted. Could you please send me this document via email? It is important that my children have this history. Also, can you provide me email information with the Siwu Language Learning Course? I am a Native English Speaker, but I have a great interest in learning basic Siwu. Thank you kindly.

  11. I have read potions of Rev H. B. K. Ogbete’s book. It will be interesting to know the current location of the larger tribe which migrated in a direction different from that of the current Kawu tribe. To what extent will our languages resemble?

  12. I would love to receive information on the Siwu language course and any information on traditional religion/spirituality of the Mawu/Akpafu people. The link for the digital copy is not working any information you can send me genevajdan@aol.com will be greatly appreciated. TIA

  13. Unfortunately for I can get it downloaded. Can someone send it to me.

    Secondly, I wish to suggest to those who can write the language to try and put together an introductory course in PDF on the Internet to learning of the language.

  14. Good afternoon

    My wife is from Akpafu Mempeasem and I would like to obtain a copy of the history of the Akpafus by H.B.K. Ogbete.

    Please could you kindly email me a pdf version as I would like to learn more about my wife’s home town and surprise her with a copy.

    Thanks in advance

  15. Lo y),
    Please if the siwu language learning course is still available I’d love to have it.
    Lo p3) siba

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