[B]The 350th edition of the sacred stone ‘Pierre Sacrée’ in Glidji kpodji Thursday has been marked by stampedes and stone-throwing incidents. [/B]
Foreign Affairs and culture ministers Elliot Ohin and Me Fiatuwo Kwadjo Sessénou, members of Parliament and accredited ambassadors and other traditional chiefs fled in haste the scene.
Rift between followers of two divinities ‘Maman Kolé’ and ‘Kpessou’ were the major cause of the violence, and it was in total confusion that a stone of clear blue sky colour was taken out of the sacred forest by the priests.
Epé-Ekpé is a set of ceremonies which marks the New Year for the Guin-Mina people. It aims to bring together and to consolidate the union on the basis of a common culture, to venerate the same deities and ancestors.
It remains a popular ceremony that set the “tone” for the New Year; it ensures the welfare of the people by priests to gods which are reflected symbolically through the colour of the sacred stone. It other function is to ask the favor and blessing of the dead by offering them sacrifices and donations.