Emeritus Professor Joseph Hanson Kwabena Nketiah, a renowned Ghanaian ethnomusicologist, will be given a state burial on Saturday, May 4, 2019, preceded by a pre-burial service at the forecourt of the State House.
He is considered as Africa’s premier Musicologist and died at age 97, on March 13, this year.
Prof. Nketiah’s funeral would be characterised by rich Ghanaian cultural displays as well as performances by the Winneba Youth Choir, the Immanuel Congregation Choir, Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Madina New Road, where he fellowshipped.
In a conversation with his two daughters, Prof. Akosua Perbi, a retired historian and Rev. Priscilla Naana Nketiah, a lawyer, they shared fond memories of their father.
Prof. Perbi, his eldest daughter, said her father would be remembered for his music and interest in culture, adding; “he was a real scholar.”
She said the name Nketiah became synonymous with music and “by virtue of the fact that I was Nketiah, I was forced to do music instead of my preference History at the O’ Level.”
“My father was such an inspiration and an encouragement, he was approachable, he lived a meaningful life”.
Reverend Priscilla Naana Nketiah, on her part, said: “My father had achieved so much and has received many awards but he was very humble and down to earth.”
Prof. Perbi said “he had a listening ear and he was very generous, he was generous not only in giving material things, but also sharing his knowledge. He said his works should be shared.”
Rev. Nketiah said her father had a strong faith in God, adding, “We saw him go through trying times in life when our two brothers and our mother died, his faith in God is what kept him going.”
To the world, he was a musicologist, a writer, and a composer, but to us, he was just a father who was there for us, he guided us to follow our passion, we want his legacy to live on.”
Prof. Nketiah, who was born on June, 22, 1921, at Asante Mampong, had more than 200 publications and 80 musical compositions to his credit.
He was the first African Director at the Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, Legon and received awards including the Cowell Award of the African Music Society, Companion of the Order of Star of Ghana, Grand Medal of the Government of Ghana and the Africanist Award of the African Studies Association of the USA for life-long devotion to African Studies. – GNA