"We’ll Bury Rawlings' Body In Anlo State" – Family To Akufo-Addo
The Office of the Agbotui and Allied Families in the Volta Region says it will not agree to the decision taken by Government and the Central Funeral Planning Committee to bury the Late Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawling at the Military Cemetery in Accra as announced earlier.
According to the family, they will bury the remains of Late President Rawlings in Anlo State as tradition demands.
In a letter signed by the Secretary of the Office of the Agbotui and Allied Families, Napoleon Kwane Agbotui, and sighted by ThinkNews Online, it said "At a meeting, at the behest of the Traditional Council of the Anlo State, held at Awadad's Palace in Anloga on Sunday 17th January 2021, we the Agbotui, the Tamakloe and Allied Families resolved to announce to you that our brothers and sisters on the Central Planning Committee expressed their personal opinions which do not reflect the view of the family in general, on matters relating to the burial place of H.E. Jerry John Rawlings"
It added that efforts made so far towards the preparation for the final funeral rites of their son are very much appreciated as mentioned earlier.
The letter further hinted that the Chief and people of the Anlo State led by the families have resolved to take possession of their beloved departed son's remains and to proceed to continue the Final Traditional Rites and burial on 29th and 30th January 2021 at the Anlo State as Tradition demands.
The Agbotui, Tamakloe, and Allied Families expressed their profound gratitude to the Government of Ghana for its commitment towards giving a very befitting State Funeral to Late President Rawlings also known traditionally as Togbi Nutifafa I of the Anlo State.
The Former Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah on January 13, 2021, hinted that the Military Cemetery is now a designated place for the interment of former heads of state in Ghana.
The response comes following the decision by the funeral planning committee of Late President Rawlings to lay the Former Head of State to rest there.
Addressing the media at a news conference in Accra, he said " the Military Cemetery is now the designated place for the interment of former heads of state"
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Updating the public on plans for the burial of Late President Rawlings, he said "On the 22nd and the 23rd of January, 2021, the Anlo Traditional Council will hold series of celebratory and traditional events to celebrate the life of His Excellency late President J.J. Rawlings"
Mr. Oppong-Nkrumah noted that the activities which will be held in Anlo will come to an end on the 23rd of January, 2021.
He also mentioned that there will be a Catholic Requiem Mass at the Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Accra on Sunday 24th January 2021 adding there will be a vigil at the Air Force Base at 6 pm.
"On Monday, the remains of the Late President will be laid in state for filing past by various categories of general public starting with the heads of security agencies, leaders of political parties, and then the general public. We have already received indications from several groupings within the general public including political parties and volunteer groups" he explained.
The Former Minister for Information said "On Tuesday26th January 2021, filing past resumes at 9 am led by President Akufo-Addo followed by Vice President Bawumia, Former Heads of States, Heads of ConstitutionalBodies. At 10 am, Parliament, led by the Speaker and Former Speakers will file past. At noon, the Chief Justice, Justices of the Supreme Court, and Former Chief Justices will file past. At 1 pm, the Former Chairman and Council of State, Former Ministers of State will also file past."
Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah added that at 2 pm on Tuesday, January 26, Members of the Diplomatic Corp will also file past while there will be Traditional and Customary Rights and Celebrations at 3 pm, while the body is in the state.
"On the 27th January 2021, there will be a burial service with full military honors at the black star square in Accra led by the Ghana Armed Forces after which the remains of President Rawlings will be buried at the military cemetery at Burma Camp" he noted.
Mr. Oppong-Nkrumah used the opportunity to caution the general that there will be very strict Security and Covid related restrictions although the general public will be allowed to view and file past the remains of Late Former President Rawlings.
Below is a copy of the Letter:
Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith