Rawlings’ burial site must be accessible to all – Agumenu

Former special assistant to Jerry John Rawlings is calling on the government to reconsider the burial site of the late former president and make it easily accessible to the people to reflect his character, beliefs and philosophy.

Reflecting on the 40th anniversary since Rawlings burst onto the political scene to establish the Fourth Republic, Dr Donald Agumenu lamented the limited access to Rawlings cemetery as “not in tandem with what the Ghanaian leader stood for.”

President Rawlings’ dignified burial notwithstanding, it is important to point out that the government was misled about the choice of his burial site, he said.

According to him, “if his wishes will not be respected after his disappearance, at least his nature must be honored”.

“He was a man of the people and his final abode should reflect his character. A safe place but easily accessible to everyone, including the common man in the busy streets of Dzorwulo, Zabzugu, Wa, Tsokor, Aflao, Yendi, Dzelukofe, Suame, Ashiaman, etc.

“Makola’s wife and Kejetia’s wife shouldn’t go through rigorous processes to pay tribute to her,”

Rawlings' burial site must be accessible to all - Agumenu

He believes that “the underdogs, just like the upper class, should have a sense of fairness in connecting with the man they loved,” as the former president truly loved them.

He continued, noting that “President Rawlings’ actions and inactions were purely motivated by a quest for justice and fairness for all” and noted that his current burial site “does not testify both to his character and of his wishes “.

Rawlings' burial site must be accessible to all - Agumenu

According to Dr Agumenu, Former President Rawlings ensured that the First President of the Republic of Ghana Dr Kwame Nkrumah received a suitable burial site in Accra that reflects his personality and that this place is accessible to all.

“In a similar vein, we must grant President Rawlings a place that aligns with his value system – freeing this burial site so that people can visit it when they want to, to continue to pay homage by remembering his good works. .

“The situation must not be created to give the impression that Rawlings’ remains are locked in an elitist enclave. The place must be located so that every cadre and political activist can easily access it, ”he said.

Rawlings' burial site must be accessible to all - Agumenu

Dr Agumenu further observed that the values ​​of truth, integrity, accountability and transparency that Rawlings touted should give Ghanaians a wake-up call to mobilize to protect and strengthen the institutions of our democratic fabric. .

“There is still a lively debate on the steps he took 40 years ago. As I reflect on the complexities of this phase of our political history, it will be agreed with me that the former leader has succeeded in reclaiming the type of socio-political stability that we enjoy today, ”he said. added,

“What happened in Parliament on the electronic tax is a real testament to how actions and inactions could generate spontaneous reactions if they are not mitigated early enough. In fact, the question unravels a certain level of fragility in our democracy and therefore calls for deliberate action to broaden our quest to build strong democratic institutions while strengthening the capacities of actors, police and women in our system of governance. ”

Dr Agumenu called for laws governing the formulation and implementation of government projects, portfolios and programs to be accompanied by strong and well-anchored continuity clauses not only to roll out a national development agenda, but also to protect public spending and waste resulting from their discontinuity.

Rawlings' burial site must be accessible to all - Agumenu

He also called on the leadership and grassroots of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to do a sober soul-searching and make sure the party is firmly grounded in the solid fundamentals it lived and died for.

“The leadership of the NDC needs to develop this unique selling proposition that the party is people-centered. That the NDC is for the people and ready to provide a better life for everyone, regardless of religion, social status, tribe, gender or creed. This is the best way to make today’s NDC attractive to win the elections, ”he stressed.

On December 31, 1981, Jerry John Rawlings seized power from President Hilla Liman and his National People’s Party (PNP) government citing poor governance and general difficulties.

He then formed the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC) which would later become the NDC as a fully registered political party. In 1992, with President Rawlings as standard bearer, the NDC convincingly won the ballot box, a feat that was repeated in 1996.

In 2001, President Rawlings ceded power to John Agyekum Kufuor of the New Patriotic Party, winner of the 2000 presidential elections. Ghana’s fourth republican constitution was thus institutionalized and became a bastion of sustainable peace and development in Africa.

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