National Democrat Congress (NDC) flagbearer, John Dramani Mahama, has stated that the demise of former President Jerry John Rawlings would be etched in the minds of Ghanaians for a very long time.
According to him, Mr. Rawlings’ death is the kind of news that everyone can remember exactly what time and where they were, and what they were doing when the news broke.
J.J, as the former President is affectionately called, Mr. Mahama said, has been an enigma all his life hence the manner of his departure had been sudden and totally unexpected.
“Like any leader, there were those who lived and would lay down their lives for him. There also were those who disliked him with a passion, and this is already reflected in his life’s postscripts written by many authors.
“I have seen several people eulogize him and a few others virtually celebratory of his passing and wishing he had suffered an agonizing death. It is the end of an era. But it is also the beginning of an era. The persona of Rawlings bestrides Ghana like a colossus”, the NDC 2020 presidential candidate stated.
Speaking at a vigil organized by the NDC on Sunday for the party founder, Mr. Mahama stressed that J.J.’s impact on the current trajectory of the country has been immense and therefore necessary to find the right balance to appraise his role as the founder of Ghana’s current democracy.
According to him, Mr. Rawlings’ life was a tumultuous one filled with tragedy and triumphs, and urged Ghanaians to use his death to bring healing to the nation.
His impact on the current trajectory of the country, he said, has been immense and therefore necessary for Ghanaians to find the right balance to appraise his role as the founder of Ghana’s current democracy.
He stressed that having led Ghana for 19 years, longer than any past leader has and ever will, Mr. Rawlings’ impact on where Ghana has come from and is headed to, cannot be understated.
“His death must bring us together. You are the longest-serving head of state of our country. You were the leader of the revolution. You are a royal of Anlo.”
“You are the husband of our former First Lady, H.E. Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings. You are the father of Zanetor and her siblings. You are the founder of the National Democratic Congress (NDC). You are a former President.”
“All these interests own you and must come together to give you a simple but befitting farewell,” he eulogized.
Mr. Mahama urged cadres of the revolution and members of the NDC to work and fight to ensure the good of President Rawlings is not interred with his bones, the positive impact he made on the history Ghana is preserved and principles that he stood for are recounted to future generations.