Your Most Reliable and Dependable Source

Abudus demonstrate over delay in the performance of funeral of late Chief


ABUDUSMembers of the Abudu Royal family in Dagbon on Thursday embarked on a peaceful demonstration to impress on government to fulfill its promise of renovating the old Gbewaa palace in Yendi.

The Abudus want government to fast-track the process that will lead to the performance of the funeral of Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abdulai. The demonstration followed the elapse of an ultimatum the family had issued the government and the three eminent chiefs led by the Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II over the implementation of the roadmap of the Dagbon chieftaincy dispute.

Zaa News Ibrahim Timtooni who on the ground in Yendi reported that the demonstration started at about 9a.m. this morning through some principal streets of Yendi amidst heavy security. Both armed police and military arrived in Yendi few days to the demonstration to beef up security in the municipality, Timtooni added.

The demonstrators later presented their petition to government through the Municipal Chief Executive Alhaji Isaah Zakaria. Spokesperson for the Abudus Alhassan Iddrissu who presented the petition urged the government to expedite action on the implementation of the roadmap.



We wish to formally petition the high office of president of the Republic of Ghana to, as matter of urgency, order the renovation of the old GBEWAA palace for the Abudu family to perform the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abdulai IV.
Alternatively, we appeal to the president to effect the immediate handing over of the dilapidated old GBEWAA palace to the Abudu royal family for same.
The Abudu is willing and ready to renovate and occupy the old GBEWAA palace for the sole purpose of performing the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai dulai IV. Mr president, we make this appeal in all humility and with the greatest respect to your esteem office. We are convinced that our demands are within your powers exercise under the constitution of the Republic of Ghana.
We provide herewith, both legal and customary reasons supporting our petition that the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV must be perform in the old GBEWAA palace unconditionally, with the full complement of all the rites that are accorded a decease Ya-Naa.
Your Excellency, the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV was customarily enskined by a legally constituted committee of kingmakers as Ya-Naa. He ruled the kingdom as overlord of Dagbon from 1969 to 1974. He was uncustomary removed from office by Colonel I.K Achesmpong’s National Redemption Council (NRC) regime under NRC decree 299. In 1986, the apex court of Ghana declared the impeachment of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai as alien to Dagbon custom. The Supreme Court pronounced that….”diskinment is unknown in Dagbon….” and, therefore, ordered that his status as former Ya-Naa should be restored. The suprem court also gave consequential directives to the effect that his male children are qualified to the gate-skins of Mion, Savelugu and Karaga. Since by Dagbon customs is only the sons of Ya-Naa who are qualified to be elevated to these gate-skins, the highest court of the land, by its ruling, agreed with the fact that the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai was a former Ya-Naa. Mr president, as per the ruling of the Supreme Court, the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai should be accorded the honor and respect of full funeral rites befitting the status of a deceased Ya-Naa in the GBEWAA palace.
Following the ruling of the Supreme Court, a ‘Reconciliation Agreement’ reached by the two feuding royal families in 1987 stated that ” on the death of Ex Ya-Na Mahamadu Abudulai IV, he should be accorded the full funeral rites of Ya-Naa in the light of the Supreme Court ruling of 17th December,1986. Mr president, it would interest you to know that this reconciliation agreement was reached after a long deliberation and negotiations between the two Royal families, represented by selected prominent Chiefs from both sides. The agreement was signed by these prominent Chiefs and endorsed with signatures of the then overlord of Dagbon, the late Ya-Naa Yakubu Andani II.the signing ceremony, and of which we have in our possession a video footage, was conducted in Tamale, with the Ya-Naa in attendance and captured on tape signing copies of the document. It is therefore, strange and surprising that some of our cousins from the Andani family will today reject what the late Ya-Naa Yakubu Andani accepted and endorsed with his signature. Mr president, by the letter and spirit of the reconciliation agreement, the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai must be performed in the old GBEWAA palace as that of a Ya-Naa unconditionally.

Your excellency, the Roadmap to peace, a document signed by the tow families in 2006 under the auspices of the Committee of Eminent Chiefs (CEC)stated that ” the old GBEWAA palace should remain free of occupation or any activity until a date is set for the performance of the funeral rites of Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV”. This Roadmap to peace document was adopted by the then ruling government which constituted the committee following the Yendi communal war in March 2002. President John Agyekum Kufour implemented the roadmap by conducting a state burial for the late Ya-Naa Yakubu Andani II. After the burial and installation of regent of the late Ya-Naa Yakubu Andani II, the Asantehene led committee of eminent Chiefs produced a draft ‘Final peace Agreement’ which states, inter alia, that, “…we therefore conclude that the funeral should take place at the GBEWAA palace…”. The draft document clearly spelt out where, in the wisdom of the three Chiefs, the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV should be performed.
Your excellency, theses two latest documents produced by a committee which was properly constituted to look into the traditional matters of the Dagbon crisis and try to mediate between the two factions, clearly support our petition for you to grant us access to the old GBEWAA palace to perform the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV.
However, Mr president, we are not unmindful of the fact that some of our cousins from the Andani royal family are still opposed to this settled matter. It is, therefore, imperative that we set the records straight in an effort to assure you that our position that the funeral must be performed in the old GBEWAA palace is not only on legal grounds, but also supported by historical customary precedence. As a student of history, we believe that you would appreciate our position much better.
The customary ground for the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV to be performed in the GBEWAA palace, even though he died outside the GBEWAA palace, is in the precedent the throne for Ya-Naa Zangina. Ya-Naa Zangina, the architect of modern Dagbon kingdom, relocated from Yendi to a village called Agbandi. He abdicated the throne for Ya-Naa Andani Sigli. During the reign of Andani Sigli, the former Ya-Naa Zangina died at Agbandi. Even though he died outside GBEWAA palace, his funeral was brought from Agbandi to Yendi. He was accorded the full funeral rites as that of a deceased Ya-Naa in the GBEWAA palace.
Mr president,there are striking similarities between the circumstances surrounding the death of Naa Zangina and that of Naa-Mahamadu Abudulai IV. In the first place, they both died outside the GBEWAA palace; Secondly, they both died at a time when there was a substantive Ya-Naa occupying the GBEWAA palace. However, unlike the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV whose mortal remain is entombed inside the old GBEWAA palace, Naa Zangina was buried at Agbandi.
Mr president, if the forebearers of our customs and tradition in their wisdom honored the late Ya-Naa Zangina with the full funeral rites of a Ya-Naa in the GBEWAA palace, why would anyone argue today that it is uncustomary to perform the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai’s funeral in the old GBEWAA palace.
Are those who take this entrench position now claiming to know Dagbon customs more than our forefathers who lived during the glorious days of Naa Zangina and Naa Andani Sigli? Are they saying today that the late Ya-Naa Yakubu Andani II; the late Gulkpe- Na Abdulai Bukari; the late Tijo-Na Iddrisu Ibrahim; the late Gunda-Na Mohammed Yakubu ; the late Pishigu Lana Abu Ziblim and the late Kumbun-Na Sumani Issah who signed the reconciliation agreement were all ignorant about Dagbon custom? Mr. President, it is not possible that all these eminent Chiefs of our great kingdom were wrong and the so-called Kuga-Naa is right today. We refused to accept his twisted and adulterated interpretation of Dagbon customs and traditions.
Mr president, permit us to conclude by reiterating our stand that the ongoing mediation process by the committee of eminent Chiefs is meaningless unless it is linked up with the total implementation of all agreements reached hitherto by the two royal families. Much as we appreciate the effort by the CEC, we are disappointed that the eminent Chiefs have not been able to implement the roadmap document with regard to the funeral of the late Ya-Naa Mahamadu Abudulai IV. it has almost a decade now since the two families committed ourselves to follow the roadmap. We would continue to cooperate with CEC in their mediation process. However, we are temporarily not in the position to attend their meetings until such as time that they see to the renovation of the old GBEWAA palace in readiness for the funerals to be performed there.
We intend to sustained peaceful demonstrations and media engagements to press home our grievances to the good people of Ghana and international community.
We pray that you would end all of theses by responding favorable to our humble petition.

Thank you.

Yours faithfully,


Alhassan Iddrisu





Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.