Kofi Annan's remains arrives in Ghana Sept 10, 2018

BY: Musah Yahaya Jafaru
Kofi Annan's remains
Kofi Annan's remains arrives in Ghana Sept. 10th 2018

The government has announced the burial and final funeral arrangements for former Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN), Busumuru Kofi Annan, whose remains will be arriving in the country on September 10, 2018 from Switzerland.

Briefing journalists on the arrangements in Accra on Wednesday, the Minister for Information-designate, Mr Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah, said the body would be accompanied by his widow, children and some UN officials.

He said the remains would be received with a brief ceremony to be led by the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) and President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo at the Kotoka International Airport.

File past

From the airport, the remains would be moved to the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC) and on Tuesday, September 11, 2018, there would be filing past and paying of last respects by members of the public at the AICC between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., Mr Oppong-Nkrumah said.

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“And we encourage members of the public to come and pay their last respects to this illustrious son of Ghana,” he urged.

Mr Oppong-Nkrumah said on Wednesday, September 12, 2018, dignitaries, including recognised groups, chiefs, ministers of state and Members of Parliament (MPs), would take their turn to file past and pay their last respects.

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The burial service and interment would be done on Thursday, September 13, 2018.

Mr Oppong-Nkrumah said the burial service would be held at the AICC, and indicated that it would be attended by UN officials, several heads of state, diplomatic delegations and the Ghanaian public.

“It would be followed by a private burial at mid-day at the new military cemetery with full military honours and a 17-gun salute,” he announced.

Mr Oppong-Nkrumah said Mr Annan’s personal testament requested a simple solemn final set of activities with no frills.

“And the state, while we wish to give him a befitting burial, will accommodate his wishes as well,” he said.

Busumuru Kofi Annan passed away on Saturday, August 18, 2018 in Switzerland after a short illness.

A statement issued by the Kofi Annan Foundation on August 23, 2018 said the state burial in Accra would be followed by UN memorial events in New York and Geneva.

Funeral committee

Mr Oppong-Nkrumah said the Kofi Annan funeral committee agreed on the funeral arrangements in consultation with the family of the former UN Secretary-General.

The President constituted a nine-member committee to organise the state funeral for him.

Ambassador Annan A. Cato chairs the committee, while the Director of Protocol at the Office of the Vice-President, Nana Mensah, serves as Secretary.