The family of late former President Jerry John Rawlings has said the Chiefs and people of the traditional Anlo state would have to take possession of his mortal remains and bury him.
“The Chief and people of the Anlo State led by the families have resolved to take possession of their beloved departed son’s mortal remains and proceed to continue the Final Traditional Rites and burial on 29th and 30 January 2021 at the Anlo State as tradition demands.”
In their latest written communication on the matter, sent to President Akufo-Addo, the Agbotui and Allied families explained that the state could proceed to hold all activities as planned “except the intended burial at the Military Cemetery and the original plan to have Traditional Rites on the 22nd and 23 January 2021 in Anloga”.
This was after the brothers and sisters of the Tamakloe and Allied families on the Central Planning Committee expressed their personal opinions “on matters relating to the burial place of H. E. Jerry John Rawlings”.
The final funeral rites of Jerry John Rawlings was slated for January 22 to 27, 2021 with the main funeral at the Black Star Square and a Catholic Holy Mass.
The body was to lie-in-state at the Accra International Conference Centre.
There was also to be a two-day hosting of traditional mourning by the Anlo Traditional Council followed by a subsequent burial of the former President at the Military Cemetery in Accra.
That plan was announced by Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, the caretaker Information Minister, after the Funeral Planning Committee, the family, the Anlo Traditional Council and other state agencies assisting with the funeral arrangements came to a consensus with the Akufo-Addo administration on January 13.
But the latest change in plans by the Agbotui and Allied Families with barely two days to the funeral came after the Tradition Council of the Anlo State held a meeting at the Awadada’s palace in Anloga on Sunday, January 17.
Meanwhile, work is already underway at the new Military Cemetery in the La Dadekotopon Municipality in Accra, including the clearing of weeds and painting of pavements.
Former President Rawlings died on November 12, 2020, after a short illness at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, widely publicised and known within medical and official circles as a COVID-19 case.