Rawlings was a ‘walking criminal’ till he died – Boakye Djan claims

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Another June 4 commemoration, another jab at late former President Jerry John Rawlings by his one-time friend and now foe Major Boakye Djan (retired).

The two ex-military officers are known to be the orchestrators of the June 4 uprising but Boakye Djan has constantly refused it, stressing that the Rawlings played no direct role in the coup which was anchored on the principle of probity and accountability.

In the Ghanaian settings, it is somewhat taboo to speak ill of the death but not even death could save Rawlings from the criticism of Boakye Djan.

In his comment on the 2021 edition of the June 4 uprising, Boakye Djan posited that Rawlings defeated the purpose of the June uprising with the overthrow of the Limann government in 1981.

“He died as a walking criminal. The fact that I built a democracy doesn’t mean that I could bear responsibility for somebody destroying it. Remember we handed power over to [Hilla] Limann… and I left to London to do my postgraduate course and 31 December came, I was not here but on the same day I opposed it and put down my uniform to roll it back which in the end I succeeded in doing.

“Remember the rule of law we used to hold senior officers accountable to, was the same difficulty that the second takeover had put us in. That is why I use to call him a walking criminal. The fact that he is dead does not exonerate him. He can be tried posthumously if people have the nerve and sincerity that what happened was wrong and should not be encouraged,” Boakye-Djan said.

Boakye-Djan however has no regret in being a key actor in the 1979 coup, noting that they took a decision to save the country.

“In fact, I have nothing to regret,” he said, adding that, “You see if you consider that we took over a country in distress right… because soldiers were in charge, does the constitution allow soldiers to rule a country? So you can’t tell me that is a normal time.”

Source: ghanaweb