The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has indicated that he had a duty to ensure that former President Ft Lt Jerry John Rawlings was given a burial befitting of his personality and that was exactly what he had done.
According to President Akufo-Addo, as a former President of the nation, there was the need to make Rawlings’ burial a priority and to pay proper last respect to the former Commander-In-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces.
President Akufo-Addo was addressing a delegation of Mr Rawlings’s family, which had called on him at the Jubilee House yesterday
In his remarks, President Akufo-Addo assured the immediate family of the deceased of government’s support. He added that should there be the need for his intervention personally; the family, widow and children should not hesitate to contact him.
“It is difficult to use words like happiness when you are talking about the death of somebody. Yes, happy that we were able to go through this solemn exercise in dignity and decorum. It had been my strongest of wishes that we would all work together to bid this man, who made such a big impact on the lives of all of us in Ghana and our history, a befitting funeral and a dignified exit,” he observed.
President Akufo-Addo continued that: “Being the current occupant of the chair, I thought it was my particular duty…. I did it because he himself has occupied this office and also because by the time of his death we had a good relationship between us and I thought that in respect of both the office that he occupied and also on the relationship that I had developed, I owed it a duty to him, the former first lady, to his children to make sure that he got a befitting funeral.
“I’m happy that virtually everybody who participated and observed the final funeral rites was satisfied that the right thing had been done by the Ghanaian state to this very outstanding figure of our history. So, to a large extent that is why I am very happy that we’ve been through this exercise.”
On behalf of the family, Ambassador James Victor Gbeho whose remarks preceded that of the President, indicated that their visit was at the behest of the widow, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings.
The courtesy call was to convey a special gratitude on behalf of the family to the President and the government for the befitting funeral given Mr Rawlings.
The family said it was particularly grateful to President Akufo-Addo for his personal involvement in the entire funeral, sometimes going beyond what he should have done.
“The widow, who has gone through a terrible time, is particularly grateful to you for the interest that you showed in the funeral of her late husband. We join her in conveying to you the gratitude, not only of the Former First Lady, but also the whole family.”
The delegation also included; Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings, Col. Joshua Agbotui, Dr Zanetor Agyeman Rawlings, Yaa Asantewaa Agyeman Rawlings, Amina Agyeman Rawlings, Madam Sefa Deenzer Agyeman and Kobina Andoh.