Jared Adiwa’s “Final Resting Place” Talks Have Collapsed: Burial in Sweden “Inevitable”
A Court action may be the only hope still available
After a series of talks between the two Swedish children of the late Jared Adiwa and representatives of Jared’s family in Kenya, the talks have collapsed. According to information obtained by KSB on Tuesday evening, Jared’s family in Kenya has lost the battle to get his body transported to his ancestral home in Yimbo, Siaya County because Jared’s two children have maintained that the body will have to be buried in Sweden. The only option left now is a court case which has to be filed by Jared’s Kenyan family as soon as possible.
According to “insiders”, the sons have overruled Jared’s clan in Kenya, Jared’s younger brother in Stockholm together with the late Kenyan’s mother who all wanted the body to be transported to Kenya for burial. Jared died without a Will pointing to his desired burial place and, under the circumstances, Luo culture dictated that he be buried in Kenya. However, the sons, aged 28 and 32, have argued that Jared spent 40 years of his life in Sweden and that he has no real connection to his clan members in Kenya.
According to Swedish law, the immediate core family of Jared who have a say over the matter are the sons who also have different white Swedish mothers. As per the Swedish law, the mothers have no say on the matter because they were divorced by Jared at the time of his death, leaving the sons as the sole decision makers on matters pertaining to internment of Jared’s remains.
However, according to Luo Customary law, the sole decision makers with regard to Jared’s final resting place is Jared’s Waluang clan steeped deep down the plains of Yimbo in Siaya county. The “Luo view” is that Jared’s children are part of the clan and that by blood, they have to abide by the clan’s decision and release the body for burial. If they do not do so, the consequence, according to Luo culture, is that they will suffer the wrath of chira (a kind of eternal curse), making them unable to live normal lives or succeed in anything they try to do. A source told KSB that the boys do not believe in chira and that they do not really care what the clan thinks.
Despite the boys having a final say over the matter, the Swedish law also gives space for Jared’s Kenyan family which has a right to contribute over his burial matters. However, if there is a dispute playing itself in Sweden, the Swedish courts are likely to side with the kids and allow for a burial in Sweden. Pundits believe that unlike in Kenya, it is very unlikely that Luo customary law could overrule Swedish law and allow for a burial in Kenya if the sons are opposed to such a move. Any burial in Kenya can only happen with the cooperation of the boys and this is a reality that might be difficult to change.
A big complication is that Jared also had a woman in Kenya whom he married and fathered a son who is currently 19 years old. According to information gathered by KSB, the son’s mother and son appear to be conspiring with Jared’s sons in Sweden for both the son and his mother to travel to Sweden to attend the funeral in their capacity as representatives of Jared’s Kenyan family. The mother and son apparently believe that once they arrive in Sweden for burial, they will also be able to settle in Sweden and have a piece of Jared’s inheritance. The mother and son do not understand that attending burial in Sweden is one thing and settling in Sweden is a totally different matter.
The complication is that the possible trip of the Kenyan wife and his son to attend the funeral is diluting the argument from Jared’s family that they will not be represented at the funeral if Jared is buried in Sweden. The mother and son appear not to be listening to the clan members because they are more interested in boarding a plane to Stockholm than cooperating for Jared to be buried in Kenya. For them, the trip carries with it numerous opportunities that may better their lives and for this reason, they have settled for their pursuit for greener pastures at the expense of Luo cultural practices.
One person who is in a big dilemma is Jared’s younger brother, Tonny Adiwa. For one, the family at home has been banking on him heavily to ensure that the body arrives in Kenya for burial. A big obstacle is that the clan (more so Jared’s mother) cannot understand how two “little children born yesterday” can block the transportation of Jared’s body to Kenya when Luo culture is very clear on the issue. Although the clan knows and understands that Swedish law exists, their view is that those laws should only be applicable to “white people” who do not understand the Luo burial customs and traditions and the mystical consequences of violating those laws.
More so, the clan has failed to understand how Tonny (who is a father to the boys as per Luo culture) could be overruled by the boys on such an important and critical issue which could have far-reaching consequences on the family and the sons alike. From a Luo cultural perspective, if Jared is buried in Sweden, the sons will have to take all responsibility for the consequences. As long as Tonny and Jared’s family in Kenya exhaust all avenues of getting the body to Kenya, they will be free from the consequences. Because of their Swedish upbringing, the sons may ignore the Luo view but Tonny and the family shall have “washed their hands” on the matter. As Jared is laid to rest in Sweden, his Kenyan family will only have to sit back and wait for the consequences which have to happen in real life.
While Tonny has indicated that he may have to go to court for redress, the result of the court action is almost predictable because the Swedish court will never give in to Luo customary law that is unrecognized in Swedish law. In summary, the late Jared may have to be buried in Sweden against the wishes of his Kenyan family and aging mother in the village unless the two young boys sympathize with the situation.
The family at home has reportedly not given up hope and are hanging on the belief that the sons will be made to understand the life time consequences of burying their father in Sweden against the Kenyan family’s wishes. For the Kenyan family, a burial in Sweden will not only be tragic but also traumatizing and catastrophic beyond explanation and any reasonable comprehension.
As we go to blog, and a new initiative made by traditionalist Luos in Stockholm to persuade the sons “to see the light” at the end of the cultural tunnel, the sons hold the power to make or break a deadlock which is, from the Luo cutlural perspective, potentially destructive, painful, retrogressive, agonizing and anathema.