Gbewaa Palace denies knowledge of ‘funeral’ for murdered Ya-Na

The Regent of Dagbon, Kampokuya Na Andani Yakubu Abdulai, has said that his family has never been consulted on the funeral rites of his late father, Na Andani Yakubu, by any person or persons since his murder in 2002.

He told TV3 in an exclusive interview at the Gbewaa Palace that the family only hears the announcement on radio, saying “it is an uncouth behavior to announce the performance of funeral rites of even an ordinary person without informing the bereaved family.”

Na Abdulai, who is also the acting overlord of Dagbon, said there is a laid down customary and traditional procedure in the performance of the funerals of Ya Nas, revealing that “none of it has been followed and even the children of my late father, Ya Na Yakubu, who are over 100 children have not been informed of the date of the funeral rites.”

He said he is an acting overlord of Dagbon based on custom and tradition “and not by any influence or consideration from anywhere.”

Kampokuya Na said news item in the media on the performance of the funeral undermines the custom and traditions of Dagbon and a disrespect to the Kingdom.

He commended TV3 for the move made to enquire on the issue as professional and responsible journalism and urged the press to “seek clarifications on matters concerning Dagbon; our doors are opened to any press house to seek accurate information”.

On the cooperation of the people of Yendi to apprehend the murderer of his father, Na Abdulai said it is the responsibility of government to provide protection to every citizen in the country and wondered how a communal violence took place in Yendi “for three good days, a stone throw from the police station in Yendi, which led to the murder of Ya Na and not a single person was apprehended”.

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He wondered the kind of cooperation and evidence the security services wanted from the public to apprehend the murderers of the former overlord, Andani Yakubu II “when they were present when the fight between them [Andani Royal gate] and their cousins [Abudu Royal gate] were engaged in full gunshots leading to the killing of over 30 people including the former King of Dagbon”.

The Regent was of the opinion that it is the responsibility of government to look for the killers of the “innocent people”, adding that failure to do so “breeds indiscipline in the country and inculcates in the citizens that anybody has the right to kill somebody and go scot free.”

On the way forward for Dagbon under his rule, he said the Northern Region at large was suffering from underdevelopment and Dagbon seems worse of, and there was the need to the bridge the gap between the North and the South “not only government alone by all Ghanaians spearheaded by the people and especially Dagombas ethnic group”.

The Regent said Dagombas in the diaspora are calling for unity in the area and are ready to invest to develop the area if absolute peace prevails.

A communal violence took place in Yendi between the two occupants of Yendi Royal Skin, the Andani and Abudu gates which led to the killing of over 30 people including the then overlord of Dagbon, Na Andani Yakubu II in March 2002.

His head was cut off whiles his body was set ablaze.

The Kufuor administration set up the Wauku Commission to investigate the criminal aspect of the incidence whiles the Otumfuo Commission, chaired by Asantehene Osei Tutu II was set up to arbitrate in the traditional aspect of the incidence to pave way for the burial of the late King and enskinment of his Regent.

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Asantehene was supported by two eminent chiefs of Northern Region, the Nayiri of Mamprugu Traditional area and Yagbunwura of the Gonja Traditional area.

A roadmap to peace was drawn by the Asantehene Committee to bring peace in the area.

The roadmap also indicated that the funeral of late Mahamadu Abdulai of the Abudu gate, who was removed as overlord but recognized by Supreme Court as former Ya Na, will be performed before that of Ya Na Andani Yakubu II.

Representatives of both the Andani and Abudu Royal Gates were signatories to the roadmap.

The process stalled after the installation of the regent of late Ya Na Andani Yakubu II.

The Abudu Royal Gate is calling for the continuation of the roadmap to enable them perform the funeral of Ya Na Mahamadu Abdulai and install his regent officially.

By Zakaria Abdul-Kadiri||Ghana