Prempeh I International Airport commissioned in Kumasi, Ghana

Prempeh I International Airport in Kumasi has been officially commissioned by Nana Akufo-Addo, President of Ghana, and Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, King (or Asantehene) of the Ashanti Kingdom in Ghana. The event attracted influential foreigners, and some of the country’s most powerful individuals, political figures and traditional heads. 

Speaking at the event, President Akufo-Addo stated that the commissioning coincides with the commemoration of Otumfuo Osei Tutu II’s 25th anniversary on the throne, calling it a tribute to the Ashanti kingdom’s rich cultural tradition and historical legacy.

He also emphasised his administration’s pledge to support Ghana’s aviation industry in order to increase its competitiveness both domestically and internationally. 

The airport was renamed from Kumasi International Airport to Prempeh I International Airport in honour of Otumfuo Agyemang Prempeh I, the 13th Asantehene of the Ashanti Empire. The President mentioned that the move was prompted by his government’s deep regard and devotion for traditional institutions.

The commissioned airport symbolises more than just physical assets, it represents the spirit of innovation, quality, and cooperation that characterises the Ghanaian people, according to the President. He mentioned that the vision was realised through rigorous planning, perseverance, and dedication. 

“During his reign, he faced significant challenges including colonial encroachment and internal strife but his leadership and vision were instrumental in shaping the destiny of the Ashanti people,” said the President, stating the reason why his administration had decided to rename the airport.

This was in reference to a general consensus from historians about Otumfuo Agyemang Prempeh I, that his reign in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was crucial to the consolidation of the Ashanti monarchy. The grounds where the airport currently stands was the site of the Asantehene’s final steps on Ghanaian soil. 

This was during the height of Ashanti-British tensions that led to the British-led Sagrenti War, which resulted in Prempeh’s arrest and subsequent exile to Sierra Leone and the Seychelles. 

In order to maintain the airport as a historic monument, the President pleaded with the Ghana Airport Company Limited, to regard it as a symbol of Ashanti pride, independence, and sovereignty, adding that the airport’s commissioning pays homage to Prempeh I’s enduring legacy.

“The airport will now serve as an important gateway, forging stronger economic ties, supporting international trades and tourism and promoting cultural exchanges. Let us work hand-in-hand to build a future that is bright, prosperous and full of promise for generations to come,” said President Akufo-Addo.

He encouraged Ghanaians to take advantage of the airport’s expansion and economic potential, especially Kumasi locals. The president was hopeful that the airport would ease the burdens of many tourists and companies in the Ashanti region and elsewhere.


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