A Thanksgiving and Memorial Mass to commemorate the one year anniversary of the death of former President Jerry John Rawlings has been held in Accra.
With attendees mostly clad in white attire, the event, held yesterday, brought together the family including former first lady, Nana KonaduAgyemang-rawlings and sympathizers to reflect upon the life of the former president.
Among the dignitaries in attendance was the Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, a delegation from the Presidency, former President John Dramani Mahama, former Chief Justices, Georgina Wood and Sophia Akuffo, Ministers of state, Chiefs and Queen Mothers as well as members of the public.
The service took place at the Holy Spirit Cathedral under strict adherence to coronavirus disease (COVID-19) safety protocols.
In a solemn message, daughter of the former President and Member of Parliament of KlotteyKorle Constituency, ZanetorAgyemang-Rawlings, said the loss of her father “has been a difficult 12 months” for the family.
Despite the challenging times, she said God had been their refuge just as He had been for all those who in diverse ways lost a loved one.
She thanked Ghanaians for the love and support shown the family when the former President passed on.
“It was indeed touching that many from across the length and breadth of Ghana, expressed their sympathies and offered us a shoulder to lean on. In you we sought and continue to seek our consolation,” Ms Agyeman-Rawlings added.
Touting Mr Rawlings as a charismatic and loving figure, she explained that the late President left a lasting impression on many Ghanaians as well as people around the globe who came into contact with him while on earth.
She noted that her father was an accountable leader who lived an exemplary life for his successors, an achievement the family was proud of.
“The journey of combating corruption has been a complex journey for Ghana but while you lived, you never stopped championing that cause.
“We are still far from where you wanted your beloved Ghana to be but your ideals and what you stood for, will also haunt those who choose to cut corners to achieve undeserved riches. This applies to politicians and non-politicians alike,” the MP stated.
The immediate past bishop of the Methodist Diocese of Ghana, Right Reverend Samuel Kofi Osabutey, said the death of Mr Rawlings was a huge loss to Ghana and Africa as a whole.
According to him, the former president was a true believer and implored all Ghanaian to take after him.
“The late Rawlings was selfless and a firm believer of the gospel. It is my prayer that the Lord Grant his soul peaceful rest,” he said.
In an interview, former Minister of Youth and Sports, Elvis AfriyeAnkrah encouraged all Ghanaians to follow in the footsteps of the late Rawlings by displaying patriotism and caring for the needs of others.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS