The New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) desperate quest to woo former President Rawlings to their side and win his favour against his own party, the National Democratic Congress (NDC), ahead of the forthcoming general elections, suffered a major setback on Tuesday when he took a swipe at them, calling them vindictive politicians who rounded up and jailed innocent people whiles killing others, and asked if that was not enough justification for them to be referred to as enemies.
The former President was drawing an analogy between what he called “traitors,” made up of the collective leadership of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) and government and the NPP, who he indicated qualify to be called “enemies” because of their vindictive attitude and murderous conduct.
“We have always had to fight against one ‘enemy’ or opposition. If they can behave in a civil way it will be fair to call them opposition but seeing how they rounded up and jailed innocent people and killed others can we be wrong to sometimes describe them as enemies?” the former President stated.
Former President Rawlings who was delivering a speech at the 30th anniversary ceremony of the 31st December Women’s Movement at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Accra, said “As we congratulate the DWM we have to appreciate the fact that without women we could not have achieved as much as we did in our political and electoral successes, as they served as the backbone of the campaign structure during the PNDC era, when they were largely instrumental in giving true meaning to the implementation of the economic policies that turned Ghana’s economy around. When the NDC was established, the huge network created by the Movement served as a powerful avenue for propagating the government’s philosophy and ideals and an influential machinery that hoisted the party’s image from 1992 through to 2008.”
He blamed the current leadership of the party NDC for not building on the capacity that the Movement brought to the party, but have chosen to exclude them and do worse than “our so-called ‘enemies’ were doing between 2000 and 2008,” adding that “we are fighting against two enemies – one the perceived enemy and the other one the traitor. We cannot fight both at the same time and therefore one has to go.”
“How could an NDC government lose its enviable sense of political morality and moral high-ground? This is why some are justified in saying that those in office are not genuinely minded, NDC spirited, NDC-hearted people and want to destroy the party in favour of something else. And so long as they hold onto power and with some of our supporters persistently refusing to see the truth and what should have been done, then it becomes difficult to take back our party,” he said.
The former President said despite promises of great developmental policies and achievements that will come the way of the people of Ghana, if they vote in certain directions, it was important to ask the question as to “which party can restore our values.”
According to him, “Thirty years ago, as Ghana pursued the agenda of stopping the decay that had engulfed the country and brought it on its knees, we lived in a man’s world and many believed the journey of transformation was a job too challenging for our women.”
He extolled the hard work of the President of the Movement and her like-minded friends and colleagues, who decided the time had come for women to take active and significant part in the socio-economic development of Ghana – especially in the rural areas where women played an important role in the family unit but had little rights as far as decision-making was concerned.
“Women’s rights have been boosted through the adoption of several laws protecting their rights and women have found themselves pursuing various roles that transcend managing the small family unit, to applying modern technology in farming, roles in industry and top management as well as varied positions in national politics. The list is endless,” he pointed out.
He said “The DWM stood up for the disadvantaged women of society and together they worked hard in creating modest economic opportunities for women, created awareness of women’s rights and inculcated a sense of self-confidence and self-worth that has today made the Ghanaian woman strong, assertive and equal to men in every sector of society.”
He described May 15 as a watershed in more ways than one, saying “30 years ago the 31st December Women’s Movement was born to create an avenue for women’s emancipation.”
He said “Three years earlier on the same date, the pre-cursor to the June 4 took place. My arrest and court martial and the truthful statements I made at the trial made me the focal point of conscience and gave me the leverage to contain the rage and violence that had reached boiling point within the military, the security services and the public at large.”
Former President Rawlings said “Ghana has come far since 1979 and 1982 and today as we celebrate the 30th anniversary of the hard work of our women, let us ponder over the direction we are taking our country. Let us remember the huge sacrifices that many endured for our country.”
He congratulated the Movement for chalking three decades of development in Ghana.

Source: The Catalyst

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