‘Rawlings started developing Ghana without a laid down plan or strategy – Prof. Ahwoi

H.E. Fmr President Jerry John Rawlings

Prof Kwamena Ahwoi says from his personal assessment of Jerry John Rawling during the 19 years they worked together; the latter did not appear deep ‘philosophically and ideologically.’

But the former Local Government Minister, believes the former president is nonetheless “a born leader”.

In his newly launched ‘Working with Rawlings’ book, he continued that Mr Rawlings has a charisma that charms anyone who encounters him.

Prof Ahwoi described his personality as “dominating, mesmerising and nearly hypnotising for first-time listeners and audiences”.

He, however, warns that getting to know him better reveals something else.

“He can be domineering, vindictive, and fearsome. The nearest analogy will be the Akan proverb about the bird “Santrofi” or nightjar, in English, belonging to the family Caprimulgidae which proverb states that “Santrofi amoma, wokye no a, w’akye mmusuo; wo gyae no a, w’agyae adee’ loosely translated as “the nightjar bird, if you catch it, you have caught a curse; if you let it go, you have let go of something precious”.

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He goes on to describe the NDC’s founder as someone who works very hard and shows results.

He however points out that he can be very divisive and is incapable of keeping and sustaining friends.

“Once he is your friend, he would like his enemies to be your enemies and therefore if you keep him, you would be keeping a curse as his enemies will become your enemies”.

He also gave an insight into what transpired at a cabinet meeting.

“In my encounters with him at PNDC meetings and at cabinet meetings, I could tell that he did not understand many of the technical issues that used to be debated. Often times, he would feign disinterest and be looking through the window or playing with his toy planes.

“But once he got a sense of direction of the meeting, he would jump on board and ensure the implementation of the decision or the policy”, Prof. Ahwoi added.

He further said Mr Rawlings had no plan and no strategy on how to materially develop Ghana.

This he explains caused him to rely heavily on technocrats.

He contrasts this with Ghana’s first President Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah whom he argues had a clear vision on how to develop Ghana.