President Nana Akufo-Addo has eulogised late former President Jerry John Rawlings, saying he left a “strong footprint in the sands of time” and “History will be kind to him” for the evolution of Ghana.
He said in spite of Mr Rawlings’ revolutionary antecedents, Ghana was poorer for his loss, becuase of the indelible mark he left in the country, sub-region and on the continent.
Joining scores of dignitaries and thousands of Ghanaians on Wednesday to bid farewell to Mr Rawlings at the Independence Square, Accra, President Akufo-Addo noted that the former ruler’s legacy of patriotism, selfless service, dedication to the promotion of integrity, democracy, and development of Ghana and its peoples, would endure in the story of Ghana.
President Akufo Addo in paying glowing tribute to the late former President at the state funeral also declared that the University for Development Studies (UDS) is to be renamed after him, recognizing the pivotal role Mr. Rawlings had played in the establishment of the School.
The late former president Rawlings used his World Food Prize money of 50,000 US dollars to establish the only university in the Northern party of the country, University for Development Studies (UDS) but declined to have it named after him in 2017.
“Despite his, and with all due respect to him, it is my strong belief, which I am sure has the backing of his family that such an honour be accorded him,” he insisted.
Rawlings in his lifetime rejected several efforts by the previous governments to name some national monuments after him. Even his own party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in 2015, decided to name the Offshore Cape Three Points FPSO after him, yet he rejected the offer.
The former president Jerry John Rawlings died at the age of 73 on November 12, 2020, and was laid to rest on Wednesday, January 27, 2021.
Story by: Alhassan Yakubu