The family of former President Rawlings from Anlo in the Volta Region has petitioned President Akufo Addo to put on hold all preparations being for the funeral rites of the deceased president.
The petition issued today, December 2, 2020, is a follow up to an earlier statement issued by the family, disagreeing strongly with the Akufo Addo administration and the wife of the late President, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings allegedly sidelining them in the planning phase of the funeral.
The family wrote to President Akufo Addo to “Put on hold all preparations for the funeral and burial of the late Head of State Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings till further notice.”
“The late Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings was not only a former Head of State of the Republic of Ghana but also a Traditional Ruler of the Anlo State properly installed with all the rites, rituals and symbols according to Anlo customs and practices and must be accorded all the valedictory burial rites,” read the petition signed by Togbi Agbesi Awusu II, the Awadada of the Anlo State.
Mr. Rawlings died at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital on November 12th after a short illness. He was 73.
He is Ghana’s longest-serving leader, having started out as a military strongman in 1981.
The traditional council of Rawlings’ hometown has warned that they will not take it kindly that they are not being consulted in the planning of the final rites for the departed ex-President.
Mr. Rawlings’ wife and former First Lady Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings had reportedly parleyed with the government in planning the funeral on the blind side of the extended family of the iconic former president.
Traditionally, the extended family has a final say on the funeral arrangement of the deceased, particularly when the deceased is a royal.