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Yaa Naa Yakubu Andani’s funeral begins today

BY: Daily Graphic
Alhaji Abdulai Anas, the Chairman of the Andani Youth Association, briefing the media
Alhaji Abdulai Anas, the Chairman of the Andani Youth Association, briefing the media

The Andani Royal Family in Dagbon has called for the cooperation and support of the public and the media to ensure the success of the final funeral rites of Yaa Naa Yakubu Andani II which commence today (Friday, January 4) to Friday, January 18, 2019.

The family has also urged people in Dagbon to be in a state of mourning and the media, especially local radio stations, to play songs that connote mourning to commemorate the historical event.

The Chairman of the Andani Youth Association, Alhaji Abdulai Anas, on behalf of the Chairman of the Funeral Committee, Vo-Na M.V. Bawa, made the call at a meeting in Tamale yesterday (Thursday, December 3, 2018) to brief the media on preparations towards the final funeral rites of Yaa Naa Yakubu Andani.

Alhaji Anas also gave assurance of peaceful funeral rites, adding that all was set for the commencement of the funeral now that every member of the family had agreed for the funeral to be held.

He said security was in place, with efforts being made to ensure the relocation of the Bolin Lana from the Gbewaa Palace yesterday.

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Programme line-up

He said the funeral would commence with the shaving of the hair of the sons and daughters of Yaa Naa Yakubu Andani, including the Regent of Dagbon, the Kampakuya-Na Yakubu Andani.

Alhaji Anas said the event was expected to attract a large number of people from far and near and so security had been beefed up to ensure safety and the success of the funeral.

“Since 1953 Dagbon has not had any funeral rites of a Yaa Naa without the involvement of the government,” he said.

"We are always compelled to compromise on certain traditions for the performance of the funeral rites of Yaa Naa. That notwithstanding, we will go through the process,” he stated.

Alhaji Anas added that due to the involvement of the state in the funeral, the family had to soften its stance on some of the sacred traditions to be performed during the funeral.

Background

The final funeral rites for the Yaa Naa are scheduled to last for two weeks and will be held at the temporary Gbewaa Palace in Yendi, the capital of the Dagbon State.

The funeral rites are part of the roadmap to ensure lasting peace in Dagbon after 16 years of a protracted chieftaincy dispute between the Andani and the Abudu Royal gates.

According to the roadmap presented by the Committee of Eminent Chiefs, the Abudus were given two weeks to perform the funeral of Yaa Naa Mahamudu Abdulai IV, who died in October 1988.

Those rites started from December 14 to 28, 2018, after which the Andanis are to perform the final funeral rites of Yaa Naa Yakubu Andani II, who was murdered, along with some of his elders, in March 2002.

The Asantehene-led Committee of Eminent Chiefs, on November 16, 2018, made a declaration to bring finality to the over a decade-old conflict between the Abudus and the Andanis over who had the right to occupy the Dagbon Skin.

The committee was set up by former President John Kufuor in 2002 to find a lasting solution to the Dagbon chieftaincy dispute after the murder of Yaa Naa Yakubu Andani II in Yendi in March 2002.

The committee is made up of the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II; the Yagbonwura, Tuntumba Boresa Sulemana Jakpa I, the Paramount Chief of the Gonja Traditional Area, and the Nayiri, Na Bohugu Abdulai Mahami Sheriga, the Paramount Chief of the Mamprugu Traditional Area.