Mahama, Bigwigs Sign JJ’s Book Of Condolence

Former President John Mahama signing the book of condolence

A book of condolence opened for former President Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings, who died at age 73, is attracting the signatures of high ranking officials of the country.

Former President John Dramani Mahama, whose party’s founder sudden death is being observed, was one of the dignitaries that went to the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC) to pen some parting words for the deceased and the bereaved family.

Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Aaron Michael Oquaye also signed the book of condolence in honour of the late former President, Flt. Lt. (rtd) Jerry John Rawlings.

He was accompanied by a member of the Parliamentary Service Board, Hackman Owusu Agyeman and the Clerk to Parliament, Cyril Kwabena Oteng Nsiah.

As outlined by the State Protocol Department, the Speaker of Parliament and his entourage from Parliament were the first to sign officially, followed by the Chief Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah with justices of the Supreme Court and members of the Judicial Service.

The flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), ex-President Mahama, alongside his wife Lordina and top NDC gurus were there to sign the book.

The children and family of the late former President were at the AICC to exchange pleasantries with the dignitaries that came in to sign.

Prior to the official opening of the book of condolence for ex-President Rawlings, the NDC and its leaders  had claimed they were not being allowed to show their respect to the party’s founder by signing the book.

NDC General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, claimed that the party’s flagbearer, ex-President John Dramani Mahama was prevented from signing Rawlings’ book of condolence by state officials.

However, the State Protocol Department set the records straight and said they had made special arrangement for the signing of the book in compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

It then became clear that the NDC was never prevented from signing the book as they claimed.

Per the arrangement, former First and Second Ladies of the Republic as well as the Chief of Staff of the Republic, Akosua Osei Frema Opare were expected to also sign yesterday.

The Chairman and members of the Council of State as well as Members of Parliament (MPs) would take their turns between 12:15 pm to 2:00 pm, and they would be followed by presidential aspirants and other political leaders.

Heads of the security services and religious bodies as well as Ambassadors and High Commissioners are also expected to sign with retired security officers, traditional leaders, and OAA/AKORA (Achimota School) following.

Thursday and Friday would be for heads of government institutions and the general public.

By Ernest Kofi Adu

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