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29.11.2005 General News

Lets spend on the living and not on the dead - Bagbin

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Accra, Nov. 29, GNA - "We are investing in the dead rather the living through expensive funerals and that is bad," Mr Alban Bagbin, the Minority Leader said on Tuesday. He said the dead should be given decent and not expensive burials knowing very well that whatever was done to the dead, it was destined for the grave.

The Minority Leader was contributing to a statement on the escalating cost of funerals in Ghana by Mr Stephen Kunsu, Member for Kintampo North.

Mr Bagbin said in most cases the living were not respected and catered for but as soon as the person died, everyone went to pay his or her last respects.

Member for Ashaiman, Mr Alfred Agbesi called for the introduction of one funeral cloth for all occasions. He said he had personally bought thirteen pieces of cloth within a year for funerals because each funeral had its own specific mourning cloth.

"After spending on expensive cloth, coffins and keeping the corpse in expensive morgues, the widow and children are left with nothing and are expected to fend for themselves."

Mr Ado, NPP-Okere, extolled the Islamic principles of funeral rites and burial, which, he said, was less expensive but decent. "We should come to terms wit the fact that expensive funerals are not necessary. Instead of waiting for a person to die before clothing him and renovating his house, lets do so while he is alive." Mr Kunsu called for byelaws that would minimise funeral costs. "The bye-laws should take into consideration the duration of mourning periods; reduction of the cost of meals and drinks and the high cost of refurbishing or rehabilitating buildings."

He said: "The compulsory use of special clothes and souvenirs and the unreasonable financial obligations imposed on in-laws should be checked." 29 Nov. 05

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