Ladies and gentlemen of the Press
This press conference is called at the instance of Head and members of the Andani Royal Family who want peace in Dagbon and ready to implement the joint decision of Otumfuo Committee and the two royal families of Dagbon, Abudu and Andani. Thank you for coming.
On the last day of its meeting the Otumfuo Mediation Committee of Eminent chiefs made up of Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu II, Asantehene, Nayiri Abudulai of Mamprugu and Yagbun Wura Sulemana of Gonja and attended by the representatives Abudu and Andani royal families of Dagbon and representatives of Kuga-Na, the Chairman of the Committee, Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu II announced to the world the decision reached by the two royal families and the Committee.
The decision was as follows:
(i) Tents or canopies will be erected at Gbewa palace for members of Abudu Family to use for the performance of the funeral rites of the Former Ya-Na Mahamadu Abudulai. The process of implementation by Abudu Family will start on 14 December 2018 and end on 28 December 2018.
(ii) Members of Andani Family will in turn perform the funeral rites of Na Yakubu II, starting the process from 4th January 2019 and ending it on 18th January 2019.
(iii) The kingmakers comprising Kuga Naa, Tuguri Nam, Gomle and Kpati Naa will select a new Ya-Na on Friday night 19th January 2019 the day the funeral rites of Naa Yakubu II is concluded.
(iv) The new Ya-Na will as soon as possible in accordance with the Roadmap give chiefships for the regents of Former Ya-Na Mahamadu Abudulai and Naa Yakubu II.
Let it be known by all that the Andani Royal Family accepts this decision. And will implement it soon after members of the Abudu Royal Family completes the funeral rites of Former Ya-Na Mahamadu Abudulai. The decision is based on the Roadmap to Peace agreed upon by the two royal families on March 30, 2006.
After announcing the decision Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu II told the representatives of the two royal families that his Committee and representatives of the two royal families will meet the President of the Republic Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in Jubilee House on 21st November 2018 to report to him the decision reached at Manhyia Palace. He next asked the representatives of Abudu and Andani families to give the Committee a list of members of each family who will be responsible for the funeral rites of the former Ya-Na Mahamadu Abudulai and Ya-Na Yakubu II. The representatives presented the list to the Committee before they left Manhyia Palace. So for anyone to claim that the representatives of Andani Royal Family disagreed with the decision reached is not speaking the truth.
The Andani Family was represented by Yoo-Na Abukari VII (Head of Andani Royal Family), Vo-Na Mahamadu Bawa, spokesman for Andani Family, Lamashe-Na Ziblim Abudulai, Kpatin-Lana Ziblim Fuseini, Tong-Lana Andani Yakubu and Woribogu-Lana Abudulai Alhassan.
On the return of the above mentioned representatives of the family to Dagbon, Yoo-Na Abukari VII, Head of Andani Family asked Vo-Na the spokesman of Andani family to go with Tong-Lana, Kpatin-Lana and Woribogu-Lana to Yendi to inform Kampakuya-Na Abudulai of the decision reached by the two royal families at Manhyia Palace. They went and informed Kampakuya Na. So for Kampakuya Na to claim as he did in the social media that no one informed him of the decision reached at Manhyia Palace is far from truth.
It was Vo-Na, Lamashe-Na who represented Andani Family at Manhyia Palace and three other members of Andani Family (Gburiman Dana, Regent of Zangbolun and Regent of Tibung) who were selected by the Head of Andani Family to represent Andani Family at Jubilee House. So for Kampakuya-Naa or anyone to claim that members of Andani Family at Jubilee House were not authorized representatives of the Family is totally untrue. Kampakuya Naa knows that representatives of Andani Family to Otumfuo Mediation Committee and to Jubilee House to meet the President were selected by the Head of Family and not by him. It was the negotiation ability of these representatives of the Family at the Otumfuo Committee that enabled the Head and principal members of Andani Family to appoint him as Regent of Dagbon. It was also their ability that enabled the family to bury his deceased father, Na Yakubu II.
Having made ourselves clear in respect of the decision taken at Manhyia Palace and what the Andani Royal Family intend to do with it, let us turn our attention to the recalcitrant and mudslinging minority who are against the decision taken at Manhyia Palace.
Reference is hereby made to a statement read to the media on Saturday 15th December, 2018 and headed as follows:
(Press conference by representatives of the Andani Royal Family on the mediation process being undertaken by the committee of Eminent Chiefs led by His Majesty Otumfuo Osei Tutu II)
From the onset, representatives of the Andani Royal Family were:
1. Sung Lana Mahama
2. Gulkpegu Gbanglana (Now Lamashe Naa)
3. Kunkon Lana (Now Kpating Lana)
4. Zugu Lana
5. Tampion Lana Alhassan Andani
6. Savelugu Gbanlan Kpema (Now Duko Na)
7. Zoggu Lana Abdulai (Deceased)
8. Kpan Na Bawa Mahamadu (Now Vo-Na)
Sung Lana was head of family and leader of the group with Gulkepgu Gbang Lana as spokesperson. Later on Kpan Na took over as spokesperson.
It was these representatives of Andani Family who worked at the Committee sittings which produced the Road Map in March 2006 which gave birth to Kampakuya Na’s regency and solved many other issues of the peace process.
It is pertinent to note that after the death of Sung Lana Mahama and by natural established process of replacement, Yoo Na Abukari Mahama took over as head of Andani Family.
The Abudu Family representatives were:
1. Mion Lana Ziblim as head of family and leader.
2. Nanton Na Sule as spokesperson.
3. Kworli Gbanglana and others.
In recent times Zoggu Lana Alhassan Iddi and Tonglana Andani Yakubu among others, were included in the representatives of the Andani Family. At no time however, it should be clear now that those who claim to be the authors of the statement have no standing in the matters of the Committee and have not represented the Andani Family anywhere else. It is therefore surprising they alleged a withdrawal from the Committee’s processes by the Andani Family. If one takes a cursory look at the Road Map, it would be seen that it was the head of the Andani Family Sung Lana Mahama and the spokesperson, then Kpan Na Bawa Mahamadu who signed the Road Map on behalf of the Andani Family. The late Mion Lana Ziblim and Kworli Gbanglana signed for the Abudu Family. Persons claiming to be Andani Family heads now have no standing in the Road Map at which behest Kampakuya Na was installed as regent.
It is necessary to bear in mind that these meetings were between Abudu Family and Andani Family and the Committee as mediator. The meetings were never between Ya-Na Yakubu Gbanglana and former Ya-Na Mahamadu’s Gbanglana who at the time did not exist.
It is very lamentable that persons who have no locus whatsoever in regard of matters related to the Committee, would dream up a statement purporting to be withdrawal of the Andani Royal Family from the Committee which had completed it proceeding three weeks earlier.
In matters of negotiation or mediation, if a party wants to withdraw it may do so either at the beginning or at the middle or at worst towards the end. You do not withdraw from a mediation after judgment has been given. In this instance it is three (3) weeks after the judgment had been given and the implementation of the judgment started.
Referring to paragraph 6 clause (g) of the Road Map, the faceless authors do not seem to understand the persons who were in reference. They can be excused because they were not party to the discussions. This was actually in reference to the elders of the Ya-Na retinue who died along with Na Yakubu II on 27th March 2002.
These were Gulana, Kpahigu, and others whose Regents wee to be in charge and substantive chiefs were to be enskinned for their crucial participation in the funerals of Na Yakubu II and former Ya-Na Mahamadu. This was done and to facilitate the smooth performance of their roles, their official residences were rebuilt for each one of them with funding from the Committee. Let it be known that there is no Dagomba custom that before a Ya-Na’s funeral is performed all regents of chiefs must be replaced by substantive chiefs.
On the question of Kampakuya Na having written to Otumfuo Asantehene stating names of representatives of Andani Family and the Committee rather dealing with others, the truth remains that business of the Andani Family is the duty of the leadership of the entire family with the Yoo Na Abukari Mahama as Head of Family.
So when the faceless authors wrote:
“The Asantehene is well aware that Dagbon still does not have the full complement of substantive chiefs whose presence is a requirement for the performance of the funeral of a Ya-Naa.”
They are ignorant of what they are saying. There is no Dagomba custom which says that when the funeral of the Ya-Na is to be performed all Regents must be replaced by substantive chiefs.
It is indeed surprising that the ignorant and supposed major players in the negotiation process talked Asantehene supposed major players without saying who they are. These major players remain a dream in their mind.
The unwarranted attacks of the Asantehene and his colleagues by faceless authors is similar to the story of a man whose jaw was broken and a good Samaritan appeared on the scene and asked the victim to hold the jaw firmly while he looks for a rope to tie it. When his search for the rope was taking sometime the victim shouted.
“I will leave my jaw if you are delaying.”
Ungratefulness is indeed a matter God is strongly against.
Let Kampakuya-Na and the faceless so called Andani Family representatives to the peace talks know that if they create problems greater than what exists in Dagbon now, the law will deal with them. No one is bigger than the law.
We of the Andani family is at a lost when faceless people who have never represented the Andani at the Mediation Committee call persons who have duly represented the family for not less than ten years imposters. This is indeed the classic case of the pot calling the kettle black. Lamashe-Naa and Vo-Na have represented the Andani Family at the Otumfuo peace talks for more than twelve (12) years, and Vo-Na has been a spokesman of the Family at the Peace talks for more than twelve (12) years. Today, unknown and faceless people are claiming to be spokesmen of the Andani Family. Let us for a second be moan this period of Dagbon when people claim to be what they are not. People who cannot trace their leanage to any Ya-Na are loudly claiming to be spokespersons of Andani and Abudu Royal families.
We of the Andani Royal Family want people who ignorant of the fact to know, that by Dagbon customs and traditions it is the uncles and brothers of a deceased person who perform his funeral rites. It is not the children of a deceased person who are responsible for performing his funeral rites.