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General News Sat, 10 Jun 2006

I Pity Jerry Rawlings -Boakye Djan

A leading member of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC), Major ?Osahene? Boakye Djan (Rtd), has expressed pity for ex-President Rawlings.?He is walking in the fear of his shadow; I feel sorry for him,? said the man who was once an officer in the Revolutionary council that toppled the military government of General I. Kutu Acheampong. ?Honestly, for me he is a pitiable sight.

He is just running away from his own shadow and doing all kinds of things that the unwary won?t understand. Major Boakye Djan was reacting to a statement by the ex-President and some of his party members on an Accra based radio station yesterday that he is a coward who ran to hide in the bosom of his girlfriend in the heat of the insurrection. Denying Mr. Rawlings? claims, Boakye Djan explained that it is one of the lies the ex-president has been peddling around to discredit him, saying due to this exploits during the fire-fighting period and also his expert handling and calculations in helping to get Rawlings out of jail, his colleagues deemed it fit to bestow on him the title ?Osahene?. How com the 13-member Council sat own and agreed, based on what I did during the fire-fight and also in government, to bestow on me the title of ?Osahene? and not him who claims he is better than I? ?Again, how come the Council appointed me to take charge of the running of the country when Rawlings travelled to Cuba for about 10 days? If it was true that I was a coward as he claims, would the council members ask me to act in his absence?? he queried.

He said it is one of the ploys of the ex-President to give names to people he has worked with before just to discredit them. He mentioned people like Dr. Kwesi Botchwey, Dr. Obed Asamoah, P.V. Obeng and himself as some of the people he called names, and added, ?Even those he has not worked with before like Dr. Addo Kufuor, President Kufuor, Mr. Kofi Anna, Francis Poku ? mention them, he finds means to call them names. He describes the actions of the ex-President during the period of the fire-fight that made him think he was a brave man as ?foolish bravado. ?Bravery is different from bravado; you go to take over a government and you get locked up and are about to be killed; and some of us took or time, calculated, worked quietly and did the right thing in the face of so much difficulties to release you from prison and you go and stand somewhere and say we are cowards. Is this what you call bravery?? Major Boakye Djan continued that maybe Rawlings refers to them as cowards because they did not allow him to die in jail.

Source: Chronicle