- Rawlings died at the age of 73 after a short illness
- The family visited the Otumfuo to officially inform him of his passing
- The Asantehene said his relationship with Rawlings was always respectful
- Otumfuo Osei Tutu II said he offered Rawlings the chance to come live in the place after his tenure as president of Ghana
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The family of the late Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings on Thursday, November 19, 2020, officially informed the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, of the death of the former president.
The delegation was led by Ambassador Victor Gbeho.
Addressing the monarch, Gbeho, who was the former president of the ECOWAS Commission said the family was yet to determine the date, nature and venue of the funeral of Rawlings.
“…We will let Otumfuo [Osei Tutu II] know as soon as these are decided upon,” he assured.
Otumfuo Osei Tutu II said he was saddened by the death of the founder of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and first president of Ghana’s Fourth Republic.
The Asantehene recounted when Rawlings visited him after ascending the throne in 1999.
They had an extensive discussion on a wide range of issues focused on the prosperity of Ghana economically and democratically.
“I even told him if he leaves the presidency, the Manhyia palace is always opened as his home, and since then we have had a lot of interactions. He recently informed me about the death of his mother, I have lived peacefully with him for all this while. He was a military leader, but he didn’t hold onto power when it was time for him to leave the throne,” the monarch said.
Rawlings died on Thursday, November 12, 2020, after a short illness. He was 73.
There have been calls for the former president to be given a dignified state burial, following threats by the hierarchy of the NDC, to organise a separate funeral.
The party accused the government led by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of hijacking the funeral arrangements for the late military ruler turned democrat.
The delegation that travelled to Manhyia palace to officially inform the Asantehene of the death of Rawlings included daughter, Dr. Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings, and son Kimathi Rawlings.
Meanwhile, the presidential candidate of the NDC resumed campaigning ahead of the December 7 general elections after a brief suspension to mourn the death of Rawlings.
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