The degree citation (below) gives an account of the
career of Koo Nimo up to 1992
citation from the University of Science and Technology,
Kumasi, Ghana on 25 July 1992
DANIEL KWABENA BOAH AMPONSAH, Laboratory Technologist, in this University you are one of our very own. For 32 years you have served this institution diligently, having joined it after training in Accra and work experience at the Korle Bu and Komfo Anokye Hospitals. You have risen from Technician to the high post of Chief Technician, Biochemistry Department, Faculty of Science, and you are still very much in the service.
But Science is not your only profession. You are two persons in one. Today we honour you in the second person, because you are KOO NIMO, Ghana's expert and leading folk musician, veteran ensemble organiser, refreshing educational thinker and committed music union activist.
Your musical activities and achievements are hailed everywhere you have been: your village Ashanti, Ghana, overseas.
Born in Foase, in the Atwima District, to a trumpeter father and a chorister mother, you have taught and played brass band music, church organ, drums and the guitar in your home village. At Ghana's in dependence in 1957, you formed your Adadam Agofomma (Roots Ensemble) in Kumasi. Irradiated with tradition as a brother-in-law to the Ashanti royal family and strenuously soaking in higher guitar skills during Daniel Amponsah’s study leave periods in the United Kingdom, you have used the group to carry the Ashanti ballad throughout Ghana, the African diaspora and the world.
Among many notable appearances, you and the Agofomma have performed for the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., the Commonwealth Institute in London and the Lincoln Centre, Broadway, New York. You have appeared in various films, playing a leading role in one exploring the social, cultura1 and historical links between West Africa and the West Indies. Yours is always music with a social conscience. Not only have you contributed to conferences as far afield as Martinique, West Indies, and Bamako, Mali, the latter a UNICEF one on how to use artistic talent to fight for child survival and development; you have also once every year performed to lepers in Ghana’s leprosaria, and you still teach guitar to the disabled here at Jachie, Ashanti.
Many honours and positions have already been showered on you. At a crucial time, you served as President of MUSIGA (the Musicians’ Union of Ghana) and as Interim Chairman of the Copyright Society of Ghana. You have served on the Board of Directors of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation and the Ghana Education Commission. You have been given the prestigious Asanteman Award by the Asantehene, the elite Flagstar Award by ECRAG, the Entertainment Critics and Reviewers Association of Ghana, and the revealing role of Guest of Honour by your alma mater, Adisadel College, Cape Coast.
Other universities are setting the stamp of recognition on your activities. In 1985, you served the University of Cape Coast, on invitation, as a Visiting Senior Lecturer in the Department of Music. In January 1992, at Columbia University, New York, U.S.A., a candidate presented his scholarly dissertation entitled "Koo Nimo and his Circle: a Ghanaian Musician in Ethnomusicological Perspective", and he was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy degree. Isn’t it time that this University recognised her very own?
Danie1 Amponsah, Agya Koo Nimo, UST honours you today for your distinguished service to the country through your exhibition of rare creative talents in the development, performance and popularisation of traditional music, and for your distinguished service to the University and the nation through your outstanding contribution in projecting traditional culture nationally and internationally. Please, step forward with confidence and receive this University’s degree of Doctor of Letters (D.Litt.), honoris causa.