Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings burst on the Ghanaian political scene with a failed military mutiny on May 15th, 1979. On June 4th 1979, following a successful uprising staged by junior officers and other ranks of the Ghana Armed Forces, he emerged as the Chairman of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) which ruled Ghana for three months and handed over to a civilian constitutional government on 24th September 1979. On 31st December 1981, he overthrew the constitutional government and formed the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) as the Government of Ghana. He was elected a constitutional President in 1992 and assumed office as such on 7th January 1993. He served two terms as President of the Republic of Ghana, finally leaving office on 6th January 2001.
Jerry John Rawlings is an enigma. It was a privilege working with him and being close to him. He and I went through many exciting experiences together. I have documented some of those experiences in this book. But there are many other experiences which I have not documented either because they belong to the realm of confidentiality or of privacy. What I have documented, however, is enough to give present and future leaders some ideas about governance at the highest levels; the dos and don’ts of governance; the skills required for governance and the importance of human relations as a leadership trait.
This is not a book about Jerry John Rawlings. It is not a book about Kwamena Ahwoi. It is not a book about the PNDC. It is not a book about the NDC. It is a book about Kwamena Ahwoi working with Jerry John Rawlings; our working relationship; our ups and downs and our joint commitment to building a better Ghana than the one we found it. Somewhere along the line, we drifted apart. This book is about that as well. It is my hope that Ghana’s leaders of today and our leaders of the future will learn some lessons from my account of Working with Rawlings, leaving out the negatives and accentuating the positives.
“On 30 December 1981, the Ghana Armed Forces held a party at the Ministry of Defence at Burma Camp. The President, Dr. Hilla Limann, had been invited, but because of the security situation in the country he was advised not to attend. Around 3 p.m. the President changed his mind and decided to attend the party. It was not until around midnight that he returned to his official residence at the Castle.
“Around this time, 10 soldiers, some retired, all other ranks, gathered some two miles to the south of the Camp waiting for grenades and other ammunition from their accomplices at the First Infantry Battalion at Michel Camp, about 20 miles to the East of their position. They never turned up. At about 2 a.m. on 31 December 1981, the small group decided to move. Their objective: to seize the country and form a new government.
“Leaving the Labadi beach in the neighbourhood of the Teshie Military Range, the handful of coupmakers moved through the bush to the Recce Cookhouse. Among them were C.C. Addae, Matthew Adabuga, Gbofah, Braimah, Alidu Gyiwah, Sammy Amedeka and Allieu. Jerry Rawlings was already in Burma Camp hiding in the room of Adabuga at the Gondar Barracks…”
Do you want a first-hand account from the murderers of the 3 judges and officer whilst they were in Nsawam Prison waiting to be executed by firing squad? Do you want to see the list of Ghanaians who went ‘missing’ during the Revolution? A relevant piece of Ghana history is in this book.
An influential northern caucus is secretly meeting and grooming him to contest the man who will select him as a vice presidential candidate. A meeting between the first lady and the Brong-Ahafo caucus results in, perhaps, the fastest ministerial reshuffle in the history of the country. At 2a.m., before the breaking of a major scandal, there is a meeting between the president’s friend and the investigative journalist about how to involve the main opposition leader, in the story to minimise its damage to the president in the upcoming election. The wife of the president reports the wife of the vice president to the vice president’s mother. The night before a crucial election, the president and his main contender are locked up in a meeting with Ghana’s most revered traditional ruler.
These and other revealing accounts on governance, policies and programmes of the fourth presidency of Ghana’s Fourth Republic are the intriguing contents of this book. Here, the journalist whose investigations are believed to have contributed to the downfall of the administration gets brutally intimate with the regime.
Rare interviews with key figures of the governing party and historical contexts to contemporary events provide readers and students of African politics the inside story of what is considered the model democracy on the continent. The fluidity of the writing style and humour make this book about politics and governance in Ghana’s Fourth Republic both informative, educative and entertaining.
The Trial of JJ Rawlings narrates the extraordinary circumstances under which a young military officer Flt Lt JJ Rawlings, later to become the longest serving Head of State of Ghana, shot into the limelight to change the course of Ghana’s history and political development.The first edition of the book, originally published in 1986, completely sold out within a year, making this second edition very welcome in response to public request.
This volume is a valuable contribution to our understanding of those ineluctable forces that have changed the contours of our society. Surely, the story of JJ, well told in this volume, cannot fail to grip and hold the reader’s most concentrated attention. – Prof F.A. Botchwey, PhD
Africa Must Unite best describes what Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah stood for.
The mission he began over half a century ago remains uncompleted and the task of this generation is to make the dream of African unity come alive and realise our full potential as the African nation that would be embracing all peoples of African ancestry.
Nkrumah called for the political and economic unification of African states as the most effective way to achieve economic and socio-cultural emancipation and regain full sovereignty over our land and resources.
The thesis of Africa Unite remains unassilable, giving hope to about 1.5 billion Africans all over the world who aspire for a better life in a more humane world.
Africa Must Unite!
Operation Cold Chop is good historical material stating what led up to the first coup d’état in Ghana. It provides a vivid account of the military take-over and the immediate occurrences after that. It is a well-researched historical piece describing the situation in Ghana under the reign of the first President. The author states historical facts without political comment. The interweaving of the various perspectives makes reading very interesting. It certainly will please students of history especially.
The first section of this book covers cartoons produced before the 24 February 1966 coup; and the second section covers cartoons produced after the coup. Within these two sections, the individual cartoons themselves are not arranged in any particular order. While dates are important in historical narratives, the aim of this book is to compare and contrast representations of the Ghanaian leader and other aspects of Ghanaian, African and world history during Nkrumah’s last years in power and immediately after his removal from power; to compare and contrast depictions of Nkrumah at the height of his power with depictions of Nkrumah after he was no longer in power. The pre-coup and post-coup periods are presented as distinct but overlapping historical spaces.
Age Range: 8 – 15 years
Two amazing books that introduce young people to great Ghanaian leaders and pioneers who contributed to the development of this country. Their roles in shaping the course of Ghana’s history, independence and social life are detailed as examples for study by our youth.
This is a compendium of speeches by Dr. K.A. Busia, a world-renowned politician and scholar, Africa’s first Leader of Parliamentary Opposition in an independent country south of the Sahara and Prime Minister of Ghana (1969-1972).
His commitment to multiparty democracy is demonstrated throughout the pages. For example, he objected strongly to the decision to turn Ghana into a one-party state in the First Republic, saying, “One-party rule for Ghana, in the light of our traditions, is a step backward from the accumulated wisdom we inherited from our ancestors.”
Today, one-party rule is a taboo to the Ghanaian constitution and Busia’s preferred economic and governance modules have become the bedrock for governance, demonstrating the continuing relevance of his ideas to contemporary politics.