By Margaret Jackson
JJ Rawlings is arguably the biggest control freaking leader that the country has ever produced. I strongly believe that God will be good to Ghana by never allowing our beloved country to produce anybody that comes close to Rawlings’ control freaking platform because the country may never have the kind of people who were able to put up with him for all these years. The stinking controlling nature has cost Rawlings a great deal because he has lost every good person that used to be around him, but the man does not seem to care. Rawlings is known to operate as an absolute leader who even today thinks and believes that he is better than anybody else.
Rawlings is known for showering praises on individuals who have served him with unalloyed loyalty. But even in such situations, he does that just to maintain his hold or grip on those individuals. I have some few examples that I want to point out.
Most Ghanaians will remember that in 1999 when Rawlings settled on the late President John Evans Atta Mills to take over the mantle of leadership from him, he told the whole world that President Mills was a Devine gift to the NDC. That statement still rings a bell in my ears and that of millions of Ghanaians.
Mr. Tsatsu Tsikata, the former head of the GNPC was personally referred to as a financial wizard by Rawlings during the “Good Old Days”. I will not leave out Mr. Kwame Peprah, who served as his Finance Minister. During a state visit to the White House in the United States in 1998, Rawlings lavished lots of praises on Mr. Peprah even though Mr. Peprah did not make that trip to Washington DC.
Another gentleman that easily comes to mind is Mr. PV Obeng. Many Ghanaians will attest to the fact that Rawlings said it over and over again that PV was the best brain the country has ever produced. This was due to the way PV had a better grasp on all the major issues in the country during the time that Rawlings headed the country. Now let’s veer to the terrain of Mr. Kofi Totobi Quakyi who served Rawlings selflessly at the expense of his health and family. Rawlings never failed in praising Totobi to those who cared to listen to him at the time.
I will dilute this write-up if I leave out the likes of Captain Kojo Tsikata, who was constantly given a nice tap on the back by Rawlings for a good work done. Many people still remember all the good things that Rawlings said about Captain Tsikata.
The Ahwoi Brothers, (Ato, Kwamena and Kwesi) were the darlings of Rawlings. Those inside the Rawlings’ inner circle at the time can even come out of their ‘holes’ to confirm the good things that Rawlings said about the Ahwoi brothers who served and continue to serve the country with a genuine heart. I have many more names that I would have loved to drop, but I will like to be brief and direct to the point.
To those who do not know the control freaking attitude of Rawlings or have not had the time to read into Rawlings very well, I will like you to pause and read carefully what I am going to write. Rawlings like the United States of America has never had permanent friends but permanent interests. If you agree with Rawlings on all issues that he puts on the table, you are likely to be his darling chap or friend for as long as it takes.
But the day that you say no to any issue that Rawlings brings to the table you become his mortal enemy number one and he would wish you were dead. That will be the day Rawlings puts his seal of hatred and animosity on you and labels you as a “Dead Man Walking”. That is the reason why Rawlings is today feuding with all the personalities that I have mentioned including many others and continues to use terrible sound bites to describe them at any given opportunity. You say no to Rawlings or express your divergent opinion to him at your peril. The day you refuse to go on board with Rawlings on an issue is when you become his Public Enemy Number One. Is it any wonder that Rawlings today has not friends and become a loner.
The moment President Mills stood his grounds and made a pledge to himself that he was going to govern the country on his own terms, Rawlings marked him down and the terrible daily haunting and hounding that we saw from Rawlings largely contributed towards the demise of President Mills. Even when the beloved President Mills died Rawlings was unhappy and stated that he had died at the wrong time. What Rawlings meant was that President Mills had died too soon and had wished that he lingered on to continue to receive his daily bashing from him.
Last month, Rawlings went to the special NDC Congress in Kumasi that confirmed President Mahama as NDC’s sole candidate for the December 7 Presidential election. But when Rawlings was given the microphone he decided to spit on the grave of the late President Mills by sarcastically impinging that President Mahama listens to him. He then asked him to clean his ‘wardrobe’ of the babies with sharp teeth forgetting that he Rawlings stings like a bee with his sarcastic innuendos. Many NDC people did not read too much into what Rawlings said but tried to downplay what he said. But some of us got the message very loud and clear.
At the NDC Manifesto launch in Ho last week, the NDC made another ‘mistake’ and gave Rawlings the microphone. What unrepentant Rawlings spat out continues to make headlines everywhere. He got the nerve to refer to some of the NDC gurus who have served the country faithfully during his PNDC and NDC days as “Evil Dwarfs” and asked the NDC family to pray for President Mahama to stay away from those evil dwarfs. Can people who served Rawlings so well with some even going to jail because of his lapses now qualify as evil dwarfs because at a point in time they stood up for the truth and were bold enough to call Rawlings to order when he veered off course?
Rawlings in his own scheme of things wants to control everybody. Those who are very discerning should mark my words. Rawlings is gradually seeking to control President Mahama by subtly giving him praises that he unlike the late President Mills somehow listens to him. President Mahama should never fall for that trap. Rawlings is setting him up. In fact to put it bluntly, Rawlings has the intention of making President Mahama his poodle if he wins the upcoming election.
If President Mahama fails to put his feet down by being his own man and drive away the evil dwarfs that Rawlings is attempting to bring to his table, he will never be spared by Rawlings if he wins the election and push back on Rawlings’ laundry list of demands.
If Rawlings did not spare the late President Mills whom he described as the Devine gift to the NDC, he will never spare President Mahama. Was is not this same Rawlings who vehemently opposed the late President Mills when he wanted to make Mahama his running mate? Therefore, I urge President Mahama to draw the lines in the sand now otherwise; Rawlings will make him one of the most miserable Presidents if he wins the election.
President Mahama must be his own man. He can win the elections without Rawlings on board, so the NDC should stop glorifying Rawlings. He is a spent force so the NDC should never give Rawlings the platform to spit in their faces again. President Mahama has everything going for him and he does not need Rawlings to rock his boat. It is definitely President Mahama’s to lose this election!