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BY Dr.James Konadu
The lies about Jerry John Rawlings are beginning to unravel with his death and grand burial.
In his tribute to his newly found bossom friend, President Nana Akufo Addo tried to put a distance between himself and Jerry John Rawlings. In 2016, he claimed that he had always been inspired by Rawlings‘ commitment to the principles of transparency, probity and accountability. Now he recalls all agitations against the Rawlings regime in which he participated and emphasises that he and Rawlings have had disagreements over the years.
Why is Akuffo Addo now attempting to put some distance between himself and Mr Rawlings?
Well, Mr Rawlings is now a dead man and may not be that politically useful to Nana Akuffo- Addo. He does not need to stimulate him to lunch vicious attacks on John Dramani Mahama and the National Democratic Congress( NDC). After the December 7,2020 elections it has also become very clear that Mr Rawlings was not that valuable after all. In spite of his support for NPP the party failed to get majority in Parliament and Jean Mensah’s machination could only end up in a disputed presidential election.
Alhaji Hudu Yahaya is perhaps the latest to have joined the praise singing choirs of lies in a futile attempt to white wash the rule of one of Africa’s worst dictators. In a tribute to Mr Rawlings at his burial service, Alhaji claimed that the PNDC reduced inflation, reduced unemployment and improved the peoples access to social services. All these claims are false .
In the first year of the PNDC administration as many as 300,000 workers lost their jobs in the public and civil service as a result of the implementation of the policy of retrenchment of labour. Under the marching orders of the World Bank and the IMF, more that 300 state enterprises were destroyed through the implementation of a reckless policy unbridled privatisation of state enterprises. Access to healthcare was drastically reduced through a policy of “Cash and Carry”. Indeed by year 2000 , when Mr Rawlings was exiting office inflation was flying at more that 40 per cent and money supply had gone up by more than 50 per cent.
The claim that Mr Rawlings is the founder of the NDC is also false. The historical record reveals that the party which Mr Rawlings founded along with others was the Eagle Party. The National Democratic Congress was founded by cadres of the PNDC including Guzzie Tanor, Kyeretwie Opoku, Sam Gabrah, Peter Kpodugbe and many others.
Indeed, the activists who came together to found the NDC were attacked and beaten on many occasions by supporters of Rawlings.
In an article headed “The Reluctant Democratic”, Dr Charles Wreko-Brobby exposes another lie about Rawlings. He is said to be the founder of the Fourth Republic. First, Ghana is just a one Republic. The Republican status gained by Ghana on July 1, 1960 has never been lost.
In any case how can Mr Rawlings be credited with Ghana’s constitutional dispensation, when only a few months ago, he said in an interview with Kweku Sekyi-Addo on Assase Radio that he has always opposed to the multi party regime. Fact is Mr Rawlings opposed the fight for the restoration of the multi party democratic order. People like Prosper Albert Adu Boahene , Dr John Bilson, Kwame Wiafe, Owusu- Gyimah, kweku Baako, Akoto Ampaw and Kwesi Pratt, Jnr. suffered atrocities just for calling for a return to constitutional rule.
The lies around Mr Rawlings are just too many .