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06.04.2005 General News

Stalemate Over Burial Of Dagbon Kings

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It is still not certain whether the planned burial of the late king of Dagbon will take place.

This is because days before the ceremony the two main factions involved in the conflict, the Abudus and the Andanis, still have some issues to settle.

Both sides are claiming the right to observe the funeral ceremony of their late king.

The Abudus want to perform the funeral ceremony of their late King, who died several decades ago before the Andanis can perform the burial ceremony of the Ya-Na.

A spokesman of the Abudus spokeman, Majeed Bawa spoke to Joy News a while ago.

“ We have no problem with the burial of the late chief so we supported it at the committee level. Where we objected was the installment of a regent from the Andani side. Because by our tradition when a king dies a regent is named and like I said we made reference to the Supreme Court ruling in 1986, it is stated categorically that the late Ya Naa Mahamadu Abdulai former Ya Naa's funeral and burial should be performed as a Ya Naa and his children are entitled to the Throne in Dagbon.” He said.

Asked of Abudu's position on the issue he said “ We are saying that let's bury Ya Naa, lets go back, the former Ya Naa died first, lets perform his funeral and then the regent is stepped aside for a regent from the Andani side to be installed to act until the funeral is performed after which the kingmakers of Dagbon decides on a substantive Ya Naa to steer the affairs of Dagbon.”

Mr. Bawa said according to the Supreme Court ruling the Abudu gate are the next in line with to the skin due to the rotational nature of the kinship.

The Andanis, on the other hand, insist that the Abudus' have no case case and that they be allowed to go ahead with the burial of the Ya-Na.

A spokesman of the Andanis, Dr. Yehuza Gomda who spoke to Joy News said "Our position is quite clear the Kruga Naa is the custodian of the culture and vision of Dagbon so what he comes out is what we are going to abide by. The burial of Ya Naa goes with the installation of a regent. And before a Ya Na is buried the eldest son is made to see the body of his father and that is the he is given a title so that is the time that the installation of the Gbong Lana takes place. How do you separate the two he asked?”

“ All these that is happening is a way of disrupting the burial programme and installation of a Ya Naa which I think is not proper, they are trying to adulterate the traditions and customs of Dagbon.”

He said bringing in the regent from the Abudu side doesn't come in at all because the death and burial of Mahamadu Abdulai has nothing to do with the burial and installation of a regent.

He warned “ woe betide anybody who tries to change the tradition of Dagbon without the Traditional Council and that is what the government and the Media are doing now and we would resist it.

Asked if they would install a regent before the burial of the late Ya Naa he replied” exactly without that no burial.”

A meeting called by the committee of eminent chiefs to address the grievances of both sides came to a stalemate at the weekend over the thorny issue of successor.

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