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Opinions of Monday, 4 March 2013

Columnist: Damoa, Adreba Kwaku Abrefa

A Tale of Nine Graves and The Fossor

A Tale of Nine Graves and The Fossor who dreads Death and Burial

One of the laws of nature requires that all creatures that live must die. Humans bury our dead in cemeteries, so digging graves ahead of anticipated deaths in especially metropolitan and urban communities where simultaneous death and burial are daily occurrences is not uncommon because they meet ad-hoc needs. It therefore behoves that fossors are employed fulltime to ensure our right to burial on time at the death of a person as in Sophocles’ Antigone where this law of nature is invoked in defence of her burying her brother Polynieces in defiance of King Creon’s decree. But digging graves in small village communities where death/burial incidence is few and far between is stupid and an abomination, the curse of which must be borne by whoever plans and executes such an idea. A family that digs graves in advance of anticipating death and burial of its members, not only do they never cease wailing and disturbing their lachrymal glands, they hamper the quiet, tranquillity and utile hours and days of their communities, friends and sympathisers. Why count your chicken before they are hatched? Graves are not dug ahead of anticipated war casualties for soldiers who may be unfortunate enough to fall victim to enemy bullets where death is a most likely hodiernal event.
In our cultural and traditional settings in Ghana as in most cultures across the world, our moral, ethical and spiritual beliefs accord our dead some sacred image which behoves that we do honour to them by according them decent burial for eternal remembrance. We do reverence to our departed ones by visiting their graves and paying homage according as the beliefs of their family members demand. For this reason, many traditional royal houses create charnel houses or family burial grounds for their members. They must therefore be within close proximity to the family and community.
At the death of John Evans Atta Mills on 24th July 2012, his successor ‘spare tyre’ Presided conceived an idea of creating a supposed so-called Asomdwe Park necropolitan community of ‘expired’ leaders of our country. In the event, nine graves were ordered by John Mahama to be dug-out, suggestive of awaiting occupants in the shortest possible time. Sound-minded Ghanaians see this idea as gauche in regard to the practices of most cultures and traditions across the country yet wanton revolutionist simple-minded minds appear not to see anything wrong with it. The expectation is that Ghana’s Presidents, both sitting and quondam would die soon in succession, be interred in the crazily created community to fulfil a crazy person’s crazy plans and malicious projections aimed to befall our Heads of State. Not long after Mill’s death His Excellency Aliu Mahama was pronounced to be seriously ill by Charon-inspired evil-thinking John ‘Draculani’ Mahama whiles in fact H E Aliu Mahama was sound in health. With his evil deadly murderous shaft drawn, targeted at and shot at Aliu, healthy Aliu’s spirit could not square up to the spiritual onslaught launched by this malevolent hobgoblin against him. Aliu ‘kicked the bucket’ unexpectedly before the elections. His mortal remains were laid to rest in his home town, but not even in Accra against the expectation of John Mahama. Ex-President Kufuor had earlier on defied the murderous venom of John Mahama’s targeted attack on him when the former President’s mock-death was reported whiles he was on UN assignment in Denmark, Scandinavia.
John Dramani Mahama is desperate for occupants to fill the nine graves he has thoughtlessly dug-out yet he appears to be scared of joining the necropolis so created. In his expression of desperation, there has emerged a dilemma as to whether to refill the graves dug or to leave them as they are. If they remain hiant and pandiculating from day to day, an occupant must of force be claimed at all cost though in the mind and thoughts of Mahama, it must be a fitting one. Amongst the envisaged most convenient prospective fitting occupants are John Dramani Mahama, Amisah-Arthur and probably John Rawlings at 1:1000 odds. Nine graves digger John ‘Draculani’ Mahama wishes his peers death whiles he lives and enjoys all the good things of the world. Fearing the consequence of the abomination so caused by opening the jaws of the earth and for which reason the wrought of the earth is boiling higher, cows and bulls have been rumoured to have suffered burial alive (zoothapses) at the so-called Asomdwe park burial ground not only to keep company with John Mills as substitutes, but also to pacify the tellural deities and spirits that have been kept in deceptive expectations and may continue to dwell on false hopes and expectations for centuries to come.
It is not uncommon to find special exclusive burial places for the most powerful, very important personalities, celebrities, the rich and famous etc in certain countries as there is in the UK at Westminster Abbey however, it must be made clear that the British have not created any one particular necropolitan community of British Prime Ministers, let alone the Monarchy. Such nationalised sepulchral communities have their history in places like ancient Egypt where the Pharaohs were entombed in purpose-built pyramids yet please bear in mind they are of family lineage. The Papacy go under the vault of the Basilica based on the Catholic faith and their doctrinal tradition and also in Russia at the Red Square in Moscow as a gauche political command.
Of the 38 American Presidents who have passed away, from George Washington to Ronald Reagan, only Kennedy and Taft were buried in one and the same cemetery at Arlington yet at different locations within the necropolis by accident of where they were born. American Presidents have always demanded that they be buried in their respective hometowns however there is a nationally and federally created, preserved and maintained Presidential library for each President who passes away. Kings and Queens of various monarchies across the world have, for sundry reasons been buried at different locations depending on their royal lineage and this, I opine is a most sensible decision for any sensible human-centred culture and tradition.
John ‘Drosmani’ Mahama loves all the goodies of life including sensual sexual gratification with both women and men. Sybaritic Mahama enjoys life so he finds the Kufuor-built Jubilee House a fitting place for him to ensconce, contrary to his party’s position. Mahama dreads death and burial which occurrence would make him leave behind his women, his private jet, his ‘backdoor Presidency’, his assumed power, his stock-piled millions of US Dollars thieved money, Andrew Solomon and others of his male pampas-wearing colleagues etc. In spite of loving live and luxuriating, as a grave digger, John Mahama has assumed a basilisk monster that is replete with such ill-will and malevolence that his wishes alone are capable of stunning his victims, dropping them dead instantly upon attack as expressed above.
‘Love life and fear death’. This Dracula knows he cannot transmute himself into another ‘Methuselah’, let alone becoming materially immortal. He claims to be a youth and would want to vacillate between a sort of youth and middle age juvenility zone yet the truth is that senescence has already claimed his image and personality even at 54. Death is hurriedly closing-in on him so burial is inevitable and that is a fact he must embrace. John embroiled in a continuum of service to the devil whiles at the same time he would want to be numbered among the sacred in heaven (if even as he claims to be Christian he believes there is such a place in the universe). He dreads death (which is an unavoidable necessary end), and is the only sure route that leads to Elysium (unless if he is another Elijah or Okomfo Anokye of the much coveted Golden Stool).
All said and done, what thoughts after-all were ruminating through his mind that motivated him to cause the digging of graves in advance? How soon did he reckon, all things being equal, the incidence of his intended victim-occupants ‘giving up their ghost’ and in what sequential proximity? Why did he choose to dig nine graves, no more, no less? Does it involve some metaphysical and numerological oracle that would conjure some benefit or detriment in mind that remains yet unknown to Ghanaians? John Mahama is surely the next candidate for his created necropolis where he will soon ‘square up to’ his victim, Prof JEA Mills. He must come to terms with his already manifested memento mori before being dragged to Hades. He has enough time to make his choice as to which of the nine he would want to mortgage.

‘He who digs a grave with intent to push his brother into it shall first be buried in the same grave’. When John Mahama eventually falls victim to his own opus, the tellural deities and spirits whose jaws have been expectantly kept open whiles nothing is fed into them will be satiated because an ultimate ransom price would have been paid which would allow for ordinary soil to refill the rest. Whether Ghanaians take Prophet Owusu Bempa for granted or not, John Mahama created nine and his event is well-nigh. If however others like Asiedu Nketia, Amisah Arthur, Tony Aidoo, Oko Vanderpuje etc would join in populating the necropolis, it would not only be bonus for the earth deities but also provide warmth and companionship for hapless Prof JEA Mills.

Adreba Kwaku Abrefa Damoa; (London, UK)