History will be kind to Rawlings
On Wednesday, January 27, 2021, the late President Jerry John Rawlings, was laid to rest at the new military cemetery in Accra.
Various kinds of tributes were presented in his honour from a cross-section of the population including the Ghana Armed Forces, National Democratic Congress, Parliament, his family, that is, wife and children, and many others.
On behalf of the entire country, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo also presented a tribute in which he pointed out, among others, that history would be kind to Rawlings.
Matters relating to the late President regarding his political career always breed controversy. While his supporters would always go with him in line with what he perceived to be the right thing, others who were opposed to him politically disagreed and condemned him or his actions.
No matter how one looks at it, it will be realised that he was not perfect just like any other human, but he did what he could to pursue the agenda of development for his country Ghana. While he was alive there were disagreements with his political opponents, but with time they all came to appreciate one another in what each person stood for.
Rawlings began his political career as a revolutionary leader who later became a democratically elected leader. He was, therefore, able to go through his experience as a military leader and also as a democratically elected leader.
One remarkable thing about him was that he handed over peacefully as a military leader and became the first President of the Fourth Republic in 1992, ending his presidency on January 6, 2001, after which President J. A. Kufuor took over from him as the next democratically elected President.
This helped to lay a foundation stone for the Fourth Republic, which Ghanaians are enjoying today. Probably, if this had not been done, seeing that President J. A. kufuor didn’t come from his party, the National Democratic Congress, things would have been thrown out of gear and the culture of handing over peacefully to a democratically elected person would not have been established.
All these put together, help to explain why President Akufo-Addo thinks that history will be kind to Jerry Rawlings.
During his days as military leader and also as President, Jerry Rawlings contributed his part to the development of the country in the area of infrastructure, agriculture, education and other sectors of the economy. Before his death, he became a good friend of President Akufo-Addo (his one time bitterest political opponent) and this sent positive signals to the entire country.
It is, therefore, not surprising that Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings and her children find it safer to be closer to President Akufo-Addo than presumably with any other group in the country. If this trend of friendship and cordiality continues, it will bring peace and contribute to development in the country.
The President in his tribute stated that, ” I believe that history, on the balance, will be kind to him and will render a positive verdict on his contribution to the evolution of our nation and the entrenchment of its democratic institutions and culture.”
The observation made by him (President Akufo-Addo) is significant. It goes to show that, as a nation, we need to let go the pains in our hearts so that there will be peace and harmony in our beloved nation.
The Spectator is of the view that peace is important because without it political and socio-economic development cannot take place.
It was, therefore, most appropriate that a state funeral with full honours was organised by President Akufo-Addo as well as his administration and the people of Ghana to express the gratitude of the nation for the contribution of the late President.
May each and every person in Ghana who stands for peace and development be given a fair judgement in the light of any good contribution to this great nation.