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Togbe Ngoryifia Céphas Kosi Bansah, a.k.a King Bansah of the Hohoe, is a real African king who doesn’t believe in old-fashioned methods of governance. He prefers to live in Germany and rules his subjects via Skype! The 66-year-old king moved to Germany several years ago as a foreign exchange student – he fell in love with the country and decided to stay.
Interestingly, King Bansah was named successor to the crown in 1987, when his grandfather – the reigning king – died. He was chosen over his father and older brother, simply because they were left handed. The trait is apparently considered unclean and indicative of dishonesty in Hohoe.
The coronation ceremony took place in 1992, but King Bansah decided him being a king didn’t require moving back to Africa. He still lives in Ludwigshafen, near Frankfurt, with his German wife Gabriele, where he runs a car repair garage and also finds the time to govern the 200,000 Hohoe people in southeastern Ghana, through Skype and telephone calls. According to news reports, he even stays up late at night to rule on tribal disputes and makes sure to visit his kingdom at least six times a year.
Although he remained in Germany, he hasn’t allowed the distance to affect his duties as king. He has campaigned extensively on behalf of his country and helped secure medical aid. He also sends water purification equipment back home quite regularly.
King Bansah was recently in the news for a burglary that happened in his home. He apparently returned from an evening out to discover that thieves had ransacked his home and stolen four of his gold crowns. Several other pieces of royal regalia, including gold chains from his grandparents, were missing as well. “Thieves had come over the balcony on the first floor, prised the door open, smashed the cabinets and ransacked everything,” the king told the UK Times. The stolen items were ostensibly hundreds of years old and worth around 20,000 euros ($25,000).