Once there lived Toma (as I would love to call him – in photo 1) in the Tafi-Atome Monkey Sanctuary. Years ago, this young man attempted a failed coup attempt and consequently got expelled from his troop and any other troop.
The Tafi-Atome Monkey Sanctuary is populated by a special monkey species called the Mona Monkey. Similar to humans, these monkeys live in clans.
There are currently 16 different clans, and they are all led by a leader who has successfully fought and won all other fellow males who express interest after the death of a previous leader. That’s interesting, right?
Naturally, no troup exceeds 140 members, so if they reach 140, all procreation after that must form another troup, charley!
Now, to our friend Toma. The young man since childhood has been a ‘Mensah’ and fights everyone. He grew up to become a troup leader of his clan. His thirst for trouble grew stronger.
One day, he took it a notch higher. He attacked the Commando – who’s the King in the forest. Commando does not belong to any clan.
The battle became very fierce as all 15 other troup leaders came together to fight him. He sustained life-threatening wounds but survived.
His coup attempt was believed to be inspired by three things; power, fame, and sex. Apparently, Commando has four wives and always only moves with them. No other Monkey dines with these four wives or make advances to them.
Imagine me approaching Addo Dee’s Maa Becky. Who born dog?
Toma became ostracised. He eats, moves, and sleeps alone with no female companion. That means… (You geriiiit).
Well, Toma has yet to repent. Till today, he still attacks members of other troops, to still establish his dominance.
“Egbɔ kuku be yedze ŋɛ ɖi na hɛ” (the dead got syndrome abi?)
In his 40s now, … he has managed to gather 7 more accomplices. These are also believed to be fellow outcasts for one reason or the other.
How else does someone become an outcast?
There’s a general rule that no one falls from a tree branch in the act of training, play, or sleep. It is considered a taboo.
And all troop leaders must enforce this. It is like saying no human should stumble and fall. Eii. Awell…
That is why it is believed that the other 7 group members of…are persons who have committed such a taboo.
They are considered the most dangerous troup in the forest because of their very aggressive nature.
Well, as they say, never get into a fight with someone who has no reputation to protect. They’ll do you dirty cos they’ve got nothing to lose.
A word to a wise…
- No one sees a dead monkey. They bury their own dead. Only in rare cases are a few bodies found. Those ones are given a befitting burial by the people in the monkey cemetery, with their graves marked.
- The Commando has a special sound it makes once in a while. (ou-houu) which echoes through the entire community, with its meaning.
- An ‘ou-houu’ once, means sad news is about to occur to someone in the village (being it an accident, death, strange ailment, etc.) So diviners are quickly asked to consult at the monkey shrine to find out who, for a possible pacification.
- If he does ‘ou-houu’ twice means he’s checking on the safety of all 16 troop leaders. They in-turn, respond ‘maa-maa-maa’ as they rush to assembly in the middle of the forest to meet him. The absence of a troop leader signifies danger, and warriors are deployed to search for him.
- If he does it three times, it means a good omen is about falling on someone or the entire community
Well, when next you come to Volta visit the Tafi-Atome Monkey Sanctuary to live this exciting history. Such a lovely place!
For this history, I have just told whether it is interesting oo, whether it is not oo, I pass the barton to Uncle Ben Dotsei Malor.
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