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Working with Rawlings
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.
Professor Kwamena Ahwoi is an Oxford University Rhodes Scholar and a University of Ghana Pioneer Tobacco Company (PTC) Scholar. He holds a Bachelors of Civil Law (BCL) and a Bachelor of Law (LL.B) degree respectively from the two Universities.
Professor Ahwoi was for twelve years Ghana's Minister of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) (1988-2000) and for one year in 1997 was simultaneously Minister responsible for Foreign Affairs. He lectured full-time at the Faculty of Law, University of Ghana from 1978 to 1993 and at the Schools of Public Service and Governance and of Law at the Ghana Institute of Management and Administration (GIMPA) from 2005 to 2016.
In 2000, Mr Ahwoi was moved form the Local Government Ministry to establish the Ministry o Planning, Regional Cooperation and Integration (MPRECI), with responsibility for the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Professor Ahwoi has variously been a member of the Board of Directors of the United Bank of Africa (UBA) Ghana Limited and subsequently its Chairman; Chairman of the Governing Council of the KAAF University, a private engineering-focused University; member of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC); and Chairman of the Governing Council of the University of Ghana.
He was a member of the 2016 Presidential Committee on Emoluments appointed by President John Dramani Mahama under Article 71 of the Constitution to make recommendations for the determination of the emoluments of the leading members of the Executive, Legislature and Judicial Arms of government as well as those of the independent institutions of the Constitution.