kufuor rawlings

John Agyekum Kufuor and Jerry John Rawlings

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor yesterday declined to respond to the corruption allegations levelled against him by his predecessor, former President Jerry John Rawlings.

Mr Rawlings had alleged that Mr Kufuor did not only superintend over corruption during his tenure of office as President, but also monopolised the dreaded canker.

This was during an interview with journalists after he signed a book of condolence opened at the residence of the South African High Commissioner in Ghana in honour of the memory of the late South African President, Nelson Mandela.

But Mr Kufuor preferred not to respond to Rawlings? tantrums when he took his turn to sign the book of condolence yesterday, virtually snubbing his predecessor who had used every opportunity to lambast him.

Instead his spokesman, Frank Agyekum told DAILY GUIDE ?he (Kufuor) would rather ignore him and let him go on because he believes there is nothing to be gained in engaging him (Rawlings).?

This, he said, was because ?he (Rawlings) had used every opportunity he had got, even during President Kufuor?s presidency, to lampoon him about corruption.?

Rawlings said that Mr. Kufuor monopolized corruption while in the case of John Mahama it was spread out.

That notwithstanding, he said ?that is untrue, it?s unfounded?it?s another figment of his imagination.?

?If you look at President Kufuor?s record, it was during his time that many laws on anti-corruption were passed in Ghana,? he noted with specific reference to the Public Procurement Law, the Whistleblowers Law and the host of other measures put in place by the Kufuor administration to curb corruption and its related incidence.

In view of this, Mr Agyekum said ?I wonder where President Rawlings is coming from,? describing as total falsehood Rawlings? claims that corruption was so rife during Kufuor?s time that the US government?s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) had to warn him of a possible overthrow, if care was not taken.

?How could it be that if the US saw President Kufuor?s government as being corrupt, how then could they turn around and give him the largest chunk of over $540million then by the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA)?? he asked rhetorically, insisting ?the facts do not add up.?


Instead, former President Kufuor?s spokesman said ?if you?re talking about those who have benefited from being in office, it?s more of President Rawlings than President Kufuor because President Rawlings did tell us before he assumed the presidency that there was a time in his life he could not pay for ?yooke gari? (beans and gari); he had to buy it on credit.?

But today, Mr Agyekum said, the man, who once could not afford to furnish his room and had to use an aircraft seat in his room, had built mansions and is able to take his children to schools abroad.

Meanwhile, he indicated that ?President Kufuor, before he came to power, had built his house; he had sent his children abroad on his money to pay for their school fees way before he became President,? while asking rhetorically, ?Where is the measure of corruption??

?When President Rawlings? wife bought the state enterprise, he didn?t see anything wrong about it; for President Rawlings, nobody is good enough but himself and his wife and that to me is very sad indeed,? he emphasised.

Asked about the relationship between the two individuals, Mr Agyekum indicated that ex-President Kufuor had got nothing against him; ?it?s up to ex-President Rawlings to determine the way he saw President Kufuor because President Kufuor had said that if he [Rawlings] treated him with civility, he [Kufuor] would extend same to him; if he treats him in a friendly manner, he will treat him in a friendly manner but beyond that, its President Rawlings who is always bringing up issues.?

Vice President Amissah Arthur was earlier in the house to sign the book of condolence.

Both individuals were met on arrival by South Africa?s High Commissioner to Ghana, Janet Ndlovu, who shared fond memories of the great ?Madiba? as the late Mandela was affectionately called by his countrymen.

By Charles Takyi-Boadu


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