Former President Rawlings dies at 73

Former President of Ghana and founder of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Jerry John Rawlings has died at age 73.

He died on Thursday at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra after a short illness.

A former military officer of the rank of Flight Lieutenant, the late Jerry Rawlings, became the Chairman of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) after leading a group of young soldiers to stage a coup on June 4, 1979.

After initially handing power over to a civilian government, he took back control of the country on December 31, 1981, and became the Chairman of the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC).

In 1992, Mr Rawlings resigned from the military, founded the National Democratic Congress (NDC), and became the first President of the 4th Republic.

He served two terms as the democratically elected President of Ghana from January 7, 1993 to January 6, 2001.

Mr Rawlings endorsed his vice-president, Prof. John Evans Atta Mills as presidential candidate in 2000, to lead the NDC in that election, which the party lost to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) led by Mr John Agyekum Kufuor.

The late former president, buried his mother, Madam Victoria Agbotui, aged 101, on October 4,2020.

Before his death, he was the chairman of the Council of Elders of the NDC.

Mr Rawlings left behind a wife, Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings, former First Lady and four children namely, Zanetor, Yaa Asantewaa, Amina and Kimathi.

By Edem Mensah-Tsotorme

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