Home GHANA GHANA: Former President Jerry Rawling now rests at Accra Military Cemetery

GHANA: Former President Jerry Rawling now rests at Accra Military Cemetery

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On Wednesday, 27 January, the Ghanaian people paid a final tribute to former President Jerry Rawling, born Jeremiah John Rawlings. This politician who marked his time retired on November 12, 2020 at the age of 73. He had a state funeral, with full military honours. Several representatives of world leaders attended the ceremony. He was buried in the military cemetery of Accra, the capital, like previous Ghanaian heads of state.

The Ghanaians gave their final farewell to their former head of state who had led the country from 1981 to 2000. Since Sunday 24 January, they had taken over the Accra International Conference Centre where the remains were on display. 

He was buried in the presence of current President Nana Akufo-Addo and former President John Dramani Mahama. “Comandante rests and remains in perfect peace in the bosom of the Almighty, until we all meet again on the last day of the Resurrection. Farewell, God bless you and thank you for your help,” the Ghanaian head of state paid tribute on his Facebook page. 

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Former President John Dramani Mahama, for his part, assured that the memory of the late President will continue to inspire countless generations of Ghanaians to challenge the status quo and use their nonconformism to stimulate societal progress. “You were and you remain the soldier in a lifelong quest for freedom and justice and restless,” he added in a Facebook post.
Jerry Rawling’s remains were buried in a casket draped in national colours, an officer’s cap and a golden sword placed on it. Previously, the coffin of the former Air Force pilot crossed a hedge of honour on the capital’s Independence Square.” You were proud of your duties as a father … you were a passionate and open-minded man,” said his widow, Nana Konadu Agyemang-Rawlings, in her funeral speech read by her daughter, Princess Amina. You had a gift for boundless sharing and you never hesitated to enact laws, if they could help the most vulnerable in our society. Jerry, I know that God created us for each other,” she said. It was an emotional moment.

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It was an inaugural mass that opened the state funeral of Jerry Rawlings on Sunday, January 24, 2021. The family of the deceased was present in the front row, as well as President Nana Akufo-Addo and opposition party leader John Mahama, to attend the sermon delivered by the Archbishop of Cape Coast. A wake was then held at the end of the day at the Air Force Officers’ Mess.

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Jerry John Rawlings led Ghana for two decades.In May 1979, he fomented a first coup d’état which would be a failure before repeating it three weeks later. He formed a junta and shot eight generals, including three former heads of state, on a beach. A few months later, he returned power to civilians after elections in which he was not a candidate. In December 1981, he led his third coup d’état. In 1992, he left the army, introduced multiparty rule in 1992, founded his party and was elected. Then re-elected without difficulty in 1996 for a new five-year term. In 2000, it complied with the 1992 Constitution, which limited the number of mandates to two and withdrew from power.

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