African Coffin Culture: Bizarre Tributes to Praise the Dead

hummer_coffin It has long been held as traditional and reverent to honor the death of loved ones in Africa with a formal burial ceremony followed by festivities. In the traditions that have elements of Christianity, the greatest accolade one can give to a loved one that has passed on to the spirit realm is a sober and long burial service, followed by jovial dancing and a bounty of food at a reception ceremony in their honor.

A new occurrence, is the focus on the type of coffin loved ones are buried in.

It was reported by different websites in the first week of December 2015 that allegedly a Nigerian billionaire, who was not identified, decided to bury his mother in a hummer jeep. Speculation around why the billionaire would choose this as a last resting place for his “mum” ensued. Many have considered the possibility that the “hummer coffin” and subsequent burial had more to do with filming a scene for a future Nollywood film then providing the deceased with the ultimate grandiose style exit.

In Ghana, this past August 2015, it was reported that a Ghanaian fisherman was buried in a specially crafted fish coffin. A Ghanaian nurse was also reported to have been buried in a syringe shaped burial case.

This could cause many an onlooker to exclaim “nah wow”. However, in the world of African burial traditions ranging from burying the deceased in their ancestral land and removing the deceased through a hole in the wall of the home, one has to decide if these recent developments are bizarre or the new mode of tribute.