I would like to share an experience with you. In March of 1996, I lost my only sister. In July of that same year, my elder brother died. In October, my mother in-law passed away. As I was not resident in Ghana that year, on each occasion, I had to fly in and find a mortuary to keep the body.
There were not many choices. Apart from injecting formalin into the tissues to preserve the cadavers for teaching medical students, there was no such thing as embalming the body. The day before the funeral, the family had to select a few relatives to go to the mortuary to bathe the body. Then we had to hire someone to come to dress the body before the wake keeping and all night vigil. Finally, arrangements had to be made to convey the body from the house to the cemetery. Securing a site and preparing the grave for the burial presented unexpected challenges. I was shocked to discover that burying a loved one in Accra was very much a “DO IT YOURSELF” affair without a manual. After the third time, I vowed never to go through all that again!!
I was particularly distressed to discover that in our public mortuaries, the bodies of the deceased were not handled with the respect and dignity that one would have expected. Alas, not much has changed since!! This is not meant to be a criticism of the staff in our public mortuaries. They do their best under extremely difficult conditions. But that awareness is of little comfort to the bereaved.
Before I proceed further, please allow me to express my appreciation and gratitude to Esich Life Assurance Company for selecting Lashibi Funeral Homes to be their partner in providing a unique funeral insurance package to address the needs, particularly, of young upwardly mobile people in our country. We are deeply honoured. On behalf of the Shareholders, the Chairperson and Board of Directors, Management and the Staff of Lashibi Funeral Homes and, on my own behalf, let me assure you that “we shall deliver your promises”
What does Lashibi Funeral Homes bring to the table? Quite simply, we offer our brand.
We are excited about the ESICHLASHIBI FUNERAL PLAN because it is unique. Other plans pay you an agreed sum of money on the death of the insured. This plan provides you with the actual services and support you need from the moment the person dies. It takes only one telephone call to Lashibi Funeral Homes to access or activate your claim. It is comforting to know that at the time of the death of your loved one, when you are overcome by grief and sorrow, professional help and support is only a telephone call away!!
Within the shortest time possible after receiving the call, Lashibi Funeral Homes will collect the body and transfer it to our mortuary, embalm it and preserve it under optimum conditions until the funeral. Once these key steps have been taken, there will be time enough to deal with other matters.
Ghanaians in the Diaspora.
In designing the ESICHLASHIBI FUNERAL PLAN, we took into consideration the particular and special needs of Ghanaians in the diaspora. Thousands of Ghanaians now live and work abroad in countries such as USA, UK, Canada, Germany, Italy, etc. These fellow Ghanaians have not forgotten or abandoned the families they have left behind in Ghana. What if the next call from home was to announce the passing of a loved one- perhaps an elderly parent, a brother or sister or an in-law. How can they be sure that proper care is taken of the remains of their loved ones. Sending money to relatives back home seldom provides assurance and comfort that the right thing will be done. The ESICH LASHIBI FUNERAL PLAN guarantees piece of mind in knowing that the body of the loved one is being taken care of by Lashibi Funeral Homes, the top funeral services provider in Ghana today.
Our motto is Dignity to the Deceased and Comfort to the Bereaved. This is what we believe in and this is what informs everything we do. We handle all bodies entrusted to our care with the utmost respect, mindful of the fact that each body once housed the soul and spirit of a fellow human being. Our goal is to provide bereaved families with the most comprehensive and complete funeral services that meet all acceptable international standards.
We started off 15 years ago as a small operation in rather make- shift facilities. Today, our physical facilities are unmatched in Ghana. When our cemetery becomes operational later this year, we would be able to offer our clients all funeral-related services, including excellent facilities for custodial care, cremation, an inter-denominational Chapel, burial and final rites all on our premises at Lashibi.
As the first dedicated comprehensive funeral services provider in Ghana, we have had to set the standards for the funeral service industry. We were the first to employ the latest techniques and technologies for embalming in Ghana. Smartly dressed and well drilled pallbearers add solemnity and dignity to any funeral. The old rope or knotted cloth has given way to the lowering devices. The modern electronically controlled cremator has replaced the open-pyre at the Osu cemetery. These are some of the popular innovations Lashibi Funeral Homes has introduced during the past few years..
We receive and repatriate bodies from and to several countries such as South Africa, United Kingdom and the United States of America every week. We are therefore in a position to compare our performance with those of our international collaborators. We compare favourably.
But we are not complacent. We are constantly trying to improve our services through rigorous staff training, supervision and discipline in order to meet the highest expectations of our clients.
In many instances, we do exceed expectations. The thousands of Ghanaians and foreign dignitaries who filed past the body of our late President John Evans Atta Mills while he laid in state, were much impressed by how well his body had been preserved- so impressed that the word got around that technicians were flown in from abroad to do the job. The truth is that Lashibi Funeral Homes was entrusted with the honourable and patriotic responsibility of embalming and presenting the body of the late President.
We are proud and confident about what we do. We shall continue in our efforts to maintain the standards our clients have come to expect. Subscribers to the EsichLashibi Funeral Plan can rest assured that they will receive the highest quality of services and support at the time of need.
Dr. ANDREW A. ARKUTU, Managing Director, Lashibi Funeral Homes and Crematorium