Feverish preparations are underway for the final funeral rites of the late Okuapehene, Oseadeayo Nana Addo Dankwa II, who was called to eternity last year.
The funeral is scheduled from Monday, February 1 to Monday, February 8, 2016 and is jointly being organised by the Akuapem North Municipal Assembly and the Akuapem South District Assembly in collaboration with the Akuapem Traditional Council.
A visit by the Daily Graphic to Akropong, the seat of the paramount stool of Akuapem and venue for the funeral, revealed that most private houses and the palace had undergone massive facelifts, while trees and places of interest had been adorned with red calico, signifying a state of mourning.
In order to ensure a successful funeral, the planning committee has come out with a number of decisions which include a dress code of either black or red, while those filing past the body of the late chief must remove their sandals or footwear. The public should also not put on ornaments, including wrist-watches, chains and earrings. It is also forbidden to take photographs of the chief’s body.
There has been a ban on all forms of noise making till the funeral ends. Drinking bar operators have been asked to close by 11 p.m. each day.
Firing of guns and muskets in the Akuapem Traditional Area within the period have been limited to only people identified by the Akuapem Traditional Council and granted permit by the police.
The police have further been mandated to seize guns and muskets entering the traditional area within the period and mourners have been entreated not to attend the funeral with any firearms so as to avoid any embarrassment.
Fear and panic
In view of the fear and panic that people might be entertaining as a result of the general perception that people would be beheaded and their heads jointly buried with the late chief, the traditional council has dismissed that perception and asked Ghanaians from all walks of life to join the chiefs to give a fitting burial to the late Omanhene.
Addressing a press conference in Akropong last Thursday, the Akuapem North Municipal Chief Executive, Mr George Opare Addo, said parking spaces had been provided at various areas not far from the funeral grounds in order to avoid indiscriminate parking that would result in congestion and cause inconveniences to people.
He said shuttle buses would be provided to convey people to and from the funeral grounds.
Mr Opare Addo said officers had been appointed to liaise with invited traditional council areas on the ‘dos and don’ts’ of the funeral so as to ensure its success.
The Gyasehene of the traditional area and chief of Amanokrom, Nana Osim Kwatia II, also stated: “We want the atmosphere to be that of solemnity and not for drinking bars to make money. That is why we want them to close by 11 p.m”.