General News

Poet and playwright Ama Ata Aidoo laid to rest

A solemn and befitting state burial service was held Thursday, July 13 at the Forecourt of the State House in Accra for the illustrious Ghanaian poet, playwright and academician, Professor Ama Ata Aidoo.

A solemn and befitting state burial service was held Thursday, July 13 at the Forecourt of the State House in Accra for the illustrious Ghanaian poet, playwright and academician, Professor Ama Ata Aidoo.

Prof Ama Ata Aidoo died on Wednesday, May 31, 2023, at age 81.

In attendance was President Nana Akufo-Addo, former President John Dramani Mahama; the African Union High Representative for Silencing the Guns, Dr Ibn Chambas; Chief of Staff at the Office of the President, Akosua Frema Osei Opare, and the 2020 NDC running mate, Prof Jane Naana Opoku Agyeman.

Officiated by a large retinue of clergy led by the Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church Ghana, Most Rev. Dr Paul Boafo, it also attracted ministers of state, Members of Parliament, some members of academia, the military top brass, family and friends.

Reading a tribute, President Akufo-Addo quoted an African saying that: “Every time an elder dies, a library burns with him,” meaning when an elder passes on some amount of stored knowledge disappears.

He, however, explained that that could not be said about Ama Ata Aidoo who was a knowledgeable teacher, famous poet, flawless public servant and an outstanding writer, who possessed excellent mastery of the English language and put all into writing.

The President said the late professor was his contemporary in the 1960s when they were students at the University of Ghana, Legon and “someone with whom I enjoyed friendly and productive relations.”

President Akufo-Addo indicated that through her work, Ama Atta Aidoo made a tremendous contribution to the development of Ghana and Africa, and expressed so many of the feelings about the faith of Ghanaians and Africans.

The ceremony was interspersed with some of her poems, hymns by the Methodist Church and songs by the Winneba Youth Choir.

A 143-page gorgeously designed brochure which was distributed contained memorable pictures of her with some leaders around the world, classmates, colleagues and family members.

Tributes written by laureates such as Wole Soyinka, Efua Sutherland, and Anne Adams, among others, as well as tributes by family members were also captured in the brochure.

She said her contribution towards the education of women and the girl-child, in general, was remarkable and that even though she never took up a gun in the African struggle for independence, her pen did the fighting for the liberation of the political and social consciousness of the African.

In her tribute, Kinna Nana Adjoa Kwesiwa Likimani, her only daughter, like her mum, used words to describe in colourful terms her relationship with her mum, which drew applause from the crowd.

She described her mum as a made-in-Ghana mum, whose Pan-Africanism, feminism, socialism, tolerance and acceptance of marginalised people were exemplary and that she would always say that the world was big enough to hold all kinds of people.

“These values, coupled with clarity and courage of purpose meant she was unstoppable and unwavering. She wrote us to freedom. Love and kindness don’t make you weak”.

“Mummy, a mountain of outstanding things is being said about you, all deserved. If you were here, you would be incredulous and ask “They are saying these wonderful words about me? part of the tribute read.”

“As Uncle Kojo used to say, I have “a big mouth” so I’ll tell those gathered here today that you were the most stubborn person, period. Founder of Stubborn Academy. She Who Will Not Be Moved,” she added.

Delivering the sermon, Rev. Dr Paul Boafo said just as Ama Ata Aidoo used her writings and speeches to fight for the right of others, including domination of the Western world over Africa, others must emulate her example.

He urged that people should lead a good and exemplary life because death was inevitable and after death, as the holy Bible had stated, there would be judgement.

Female ladies of the Ghana Navy in a regimented fashion presented the wreaths to seven designated people who laid them on behalf of the state, the chiefs and people, her daughter, the clergy, the writers’ association and Wesley Girls High School.

Her casket, draped in the colours of the Ghana flag, was carried by the officers and men of the Ghana Navy to a waiting hearse in a well-rehearsed slow match to be transported to Abeadze Kyeakor in the Central Region for burial on Saturday.                                                                                                                                                        Source: graphic.com.gh

Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Close