My relationship with Rawlings was that of open animosity - Akufo-Addo

My relationship with Rawlings was that of open animosity - Akufo-Addo

- Akufo-Addo and Rawlings for about three decades were at loggerheads with each other

- That, however, changed in 2012 after the former visited the latter at his residence

- Rawlings died last year and he will be buried today, Wednesday, January 27, 2021

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President Nana Akufo-Addo was unequivocally frank on Wednesday, January 27, 2021, during the state burial service of former President Rawlings when he spoke at the event.

Sounding brutally honest in his eulogy, Akufo-Addo did not mince words when he stated that it was no secret the relationship between him and the former president was “one of open animosity.”

That, however, changed after he visited Rawlings’ Ridge residence in 2012.

“We came to see value in each other, and understood, to a very large degree, our respective perspectives. One thing we had in common was our mutual commitment to public service,” he stated.

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That auspicious visit to the Ridge residence signified the easing of tensions between the two, leading to what the president described as “a friendship that lasted for the better part of some eight years.”

Rawlings, President Akufo-Addo stated remained a fountain of cogent advice and on several occasions counted on his huge wealth of experience and knowledge.

The last time the two met was during the funeral of Rawlings’ late mother, Victoria Agbotui, at the forecourt of the State House on October 24, 2020.

The president spoke about a symbolic gesture advanced to him by the former president when he was called up by the clergy to receive special prayers as the only surviving son.

“He told the men of God to wait and called for me to walk up to join him to receive the special prayers. He whispered to my ears as I stood beside him: “I reminded them that they should pray for you also because you had also lost your mother.” I was touched by this,” President Akufo-Addo stated.

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Rawlings died on November 12, 2020, whilst receiving treatment after a short illness at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital.

He was 73.

He reportedly backed President Akufo-Addo to win the December 2020 general elections before his untimely demise, a close friend by the name Riad Hozaife, disclosed.

According to Hozaife, as reported on Ghanaweb, Rawlings loathe the fact that former President, John Dramani Mahama, was leading the NDC into the elections.

“Jerry Rawlings supported Nana in the election,” Hozaife reportedly told Accra-based Asempa FM.

President Akufo-Addo went ahead to win the elections held barely a month after the death of Rawlings.

He defeated Mahama to secure another four-year term; collecting 51.302% of the votes cast against the latter’s 47.359%.

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