Tomorrow Friday, November 12, 2021, marks exactly a year Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings passed away. There is going to be a remembrance service to mark the first anniversary at The Holy Spirit Cathedral – Adabraka in Accra. The time is 9.00 am.
The event which is open to the general public is to remember the first president of the Fourth Republic. Ghanaians saw him as a loving President, husband, father and friend to many. The attire for the anniversary is white – either formal or traditional.
The Late Jerry John Rawlings was born on June 22, 1947, to the late Victoria Agbotui and James Ramsey John. The father was a chemist from Castle Douglas in Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland. The former president was a Fighter Pilot in the Ghana Armed Force in 1968. He won the coveted “Speed Bird Trophy” as the best cadet in flying the Su-7 ground attack supersonic jet aircraft as he was skilled in aerobatics.
Climbing to the height of Flight Lieutenant in his profession, Rawlings retired from military service to venture into politics in 1992. He founded his own political party the National Democratic Congress.
In politics, he governed diligently, the history books known him as one of the outstanding leaders of the nation. More especially in the 4th Republic as he was the author. Ghanaians remember him as the father of democracy in the country and anti-corruption defender. In fact, he had a lot of influence in the political spheres of the country.
Among the many things that he did that sent awe to people was his impact on the University of Development Studies. The selfless politician used his prize money from the World Food Prize worth $50,000 as seed for the founding of the university.
That tells why he received the university’s Honorary Award. Besides, the current President Akuffo-Addo wanted to honour him by changing the university’s name into the late president’s. However, the family declined because while he was alive, he had declined the honour on several occasions.
J.J. Rawlings died on November 12, 2021. He was 73. Even though the family didn’t disclose the very ailment that took his life, the general public believes it was the deadly Covid-19.