National Funeral, Not Party Funeral
8/4/2012 12:30:58 PM -
The dust appears to be gradually settling, regarding the funeral arrangements of the late President Mills, or so it seems.
Barring an unlikely shift in venue, the late President Mills would be heading for a permanent grave, not without spending a yet-to-be announced period in a first grave close to the Castle anyway. Regardless of the weird burial arrangement, we are pleased that the state players involved have seen reason to deal with those who matter in the family of the deceased.
Whatever happens to the nine mysterious graves at the Flagstaff House where the government put up a seemingly spirited fight to bury the departed president, questions as to what informed the decision in the first place are not leaving the political terrain anytime soon. The theatricals notwithstanding, we are glad all would soon be over and the late President would be committed to dust, the way of all flesh.
We were almost getting crazy, like many Ghanaians, about the vacillation over the site for the burial alongside the genuine concerns of the bereaved family.
As one president who passed away while in office, it is our opinion that regardless of party affiliation, all Ghanaians must be contained on the funeral space. Not doing so and allowing the place to be consumed by irritating and subtle yet abrasive political campaigning, would reduce the activity to a mere partisan event, certainly an obvious sacrilegious engagement during a funeral of this magnitude.
That would also change the mood of the occasion and give cause for non-NDC supporters to withdraw, thereby depriving the occasion of its important attribute of an all-inclusive national celebration of the life of a fallen head of state.
We would also plead with the speech writer of the President to be mindful of his or her composition for the occasion, lest the day is mired in varying interpretations, as happened on the seventh day of mourning at the Children's Park when reference to John's 'youthfulness' spoilt the day. The president's image maker is still responding to a motley of queries about the inappropriateness of the remark.
Let the funeral and burial unite us as a people belonging to the same nation with a common desire to have our country move forward. That is a critical determinant of progress, the opposite of which is unnecessary engagement in intemperate language. Achieving the foregone would be an important tribute to the deceased, not subtle campaign messages in place of dirges.