I've Not Spoken To Rawlings In 41 Years - Boakye Djan

Major (rtd) Kwadwo Boakye Djan who planned the June 4, 1979, military coup with other junior officers that brought Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings to power in Ghana, has reiterated that the event was not worth celebrating because of the bloody excesses.

Rather, he thinks it should just be a solemn commemorative event. 

In a radio interview on the occasion of the 41st anniversary of the uprising, and when he was asked for a comment on whether or not he has been engaging in conversations with Mr Rawlings, Boakye Djan said he has not spoken to Mr Rawlings for the past 41 years.

"Let me tell you and your listeners that for the past 41 years I have not spoken" to Jerry John Rawlings, "even though I was his best man before that," he said in the radio interview with Accra based Okay FM on Thursday morning, which was monitored by Graphic Online.

Asked if they were at loggerheads, Boakye Djan said Rawlings went out to remove a democratically elected government on 31st December 1981 that they [Rawlings and Boakye Djan] put in place and for which they [coup makers] organised sanctions against those who had earlier ousted Kwame Nkrumah and the other democratically elected government [Busia's government].
"So he [Rawlings] put himself in a position precisely in what [General] Akuffo and others found themselves and you know in law, they say crime has no time limit."

Major (rtd) Boakye Djan said he believes that Mr Rawlings has to be held to account for the 31st December 1981 coup as the last man standing and insisted he has to answer for overthrowing President Hilla Liman's regime [3rd Republic] which was a constitutionally elected regime.

He said they [Boakye Djan and Rawlings] put Liman there and for him [Rawlings] to turn around and oust Liman was something he [Djan] does not accept.

Let's commemorate June 4th solemnly - Boakye Djan

On how the June 4th uprising should be recognised in Ghana's history and commemorated, Boakye Djan said some have said it is not worth celebrating but it should rather be commemorated because people died, "eight Generals were executed and many other soldiers died in the bloody confrontation." 

He said acts of war are not celebrated and that even in Britain, the whole royal family goes to the cenotaph once a year to solemnly commemorate the death of all those who died in the first and second world wars.

“I think the time has come for us to start doing something like that in this country.”

He said the noise with the commemoration of June 4th should be looked at and that “there were dangerous gaps in the knowledge of some people . . . and we need to sit down and think properly and do it and stop making politics with it because June 4th is a guarantor of our democracy.”

He said June 4th has guaranteed the long constitutional rule that Ghana has witnessed since 1992.