Kyebi (E/R), May 15, GNA - The state burial service of the First Lady in the Second Republic, Mrs Adeline Akufo-Addo, was held at the Kyebi Ebenezer Presbyterian Church of Ghana on Saturday, attended by President John Agyekum Kufuor, the chairman of the Council of State, Prof. Alex Kwapong, Ministers of State, Members of the Diplomatic Corps, chiefs, leaders of various Christian denominations and hundreds of people from all walks of life.
Former President Jerry John Rawlings also led a high-powered NDC delegation to the funeral, while the Asantehene was also represented by a delegation led by Nana Lovelace Prempeh. President Kufuor, accompanied by the First Lady, Theresa Kufuor, were the last to pay their last respects to the mortal remains of the late former First Lady, laid in a flower-bedecked cortege guarded by a ten-member burial party from the Accra Air Force Base.
The late Mrs Akufo-Addo, who died on March 21, this year at the age of 86, was the wife of the President of the Second Republic, the late Justice Edward Akufo-Addo. She had four children, including the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and MP for Abuakwa. Known in private life as Adeline Sylvia Eugenia Ama Yeboakua Ofori-Atta, she was the daughter of the late Okyenhene, Nana Sir Ofori-Atta I, sister of Mr William Ofori-Atta (popularly called Paa Willie) and niece of the "doyen of Ghanaian politics", Dr J.B. Dankwa, who, including her husband Edward, were among the "Big Six" of the anti-colonial struggle of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC).
Installed as the Abontendomhene (queenmother of the royals of the Ofori Panin Fie of Kyebi), her mortal remains were to be buried later in the day beside that of her late husband's tomb at Akropong-Akuapem, according to their mutual wish.
The burial service was conducted by a 15-member team of Officiating Ministers led by the Very Rev. Anthony A. Beeko, a former Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PSG).
President Kufuor, in a tribute read on his behalf by the Minister of Tourism and Modernization of the Capital City, Mr Jake Obitsebi-Lamptey, described the late Mrs Akufo-Addo as an "asset, not only to the late President, but to the party and the country as a whole." "As the wife of one of the famous Big Six, who bore the brunt of the agony of the independence struggle, she had paid her dues to the country."
President Kufuor said in her last days, Mrs Akufo-Addo became a "constant reminder of the rich history of our country and an embodiment of the finest qualities of a generation whose vision and sacrifice gave us an independent country of our own." In his sermon, Rev. Beeko described the late First Lady as an embodiment of sterling qualities who stood gallantly behind her husband and relations through the strenuous and agonizing period of the anti-colonial struggle, despite her position as a princess.
She expressed her faith in God and support of the evangelical mission of the Church by donating 100,000 cedis in 1990 towards the rehabilitation of the Kyebi Mission House, Rev Beeko said. Nana Akufo-Addo read the tribute on behalf of the children in which they counted themselves lucky for having the late First Lady as their mother and protector.