Accra, June 23, GNA - Government has decided to give a fitting State burial to Mr Lawrence Rosario Abavana, a Minister in the First Republic and Member of Council of State in the Third Republic, at Navrongo, in the Upper East Region on Saturday July 3.
President John Agyekum Kufuor announced this when a delegation from the bereaved family officially informed the Government about his death at the Castle, Osu on Wednesday.
He said the late Abavana lived not only for the people of Navrongo but for the entire country, rose through the public service as a true Ghanaian, social and great political leader.
President Kufuor said people like the late Abavana, who distinguished themselves in the socio-economic development of the country, deserved to be honoured with a State burial.
Mr Mahami Salifu, Upper East Regional Minister, who led the delegation, said the late Abavana was a role model for the Northern Parts of the country.
Mr Lawrence Satuh, a Spokesman for the Adabale Family of Navrongo, said the body would be laid in state on Friday, July 2 for wakekeeping and burial on Saturday, July 3 after burial mass at the Navrongo Roman Catholic Cathedral.
He said a memorial mass would be held the following day at Navrongo before another memorial mass at the Christ the King Catholic Church in Accra on Sunday, July 11 to be followed by reception at the DuBois Centre.
The late Abavana aged 84 died on Saturday, May 29 at Navrongo. Mr Abavana, a Teacher, was elected a Member of the National Assembly of the Gold Coast in 1951, when Dr Kwame Nkrumah was the Leader of Government Business.
In 1954 and 1956 he was appointed Ministerial Secretary for the Ministry of Transport and Communication and the Ministry of Agriculture, respectively.
Mr Abavana was elected Member of Parliament for the Convention People's Party (CPP) in March 1957 and served in various positions as the Minister of Agriculture and the First Regional Commissioner for the Northern Region.
Mr Abavana, between July 1960 and 1965 held various positions, which included Minister of Health; Minister of Trade; Minister of Mines and Natural Resources and Minister of the Interior.
From 1992 until his death, the late Abavana was the President of the Retired Catholic Workers Association.
Mr Satuh on behalf of the bereaved family presented a cock, hoe and tobacco to President Kufuor.