Former President Jerry John Rawlings has revealed that there have been occasions where he has had to advice President John Evans Atta Mills, but they were not taken wholly.
“I have always given [him counsel] but he hardly takes it, yes he hardly takes it,” he told the media at the NDC’s National Delegates’ Congress in Sunyani on Saturday to elect its flagbearer.
Mr Rawlings who happens to be the founder of the NDC was responding to questions whether he would be available to give advice to President Mills, if the delegates maintained him as the leader of the party, though he had wished the president was changed.
The former president expressed fears that the delegates may not have the courage and temerity to vote according to their conscience, explaining that they have been corrupted by financial inducement.
He alleged that for fear of losing the election, supporters of President Mills deliberately postponed the congress and started influencing people with money.
He however cautioned that anybody using money to win the election will cause the party’s defeat in 2012, noting, “the new NDC that has been induced by money would be strong enough to stand up to the NPP in the 2012 election.”
Mr Rawlings said: “if the delegates will truly be truthful, that is the way it should go. But if on the other hand, they have also grown immune – where the abnormal becomes the normal, which is what is happening to Ghana today – then the yardstick by which they can measure what is right and what is wrong begins to change.”
He reiterated his call for former government officials under the erstwhile Kufuor regime to be prosecuted, insisting that if this is not done, people will commit atrocities and go unpunished.
In reference to the former IMF boss Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s alleged sexual assault on a maid, Mr Rawlings stated that “in America you don’t get away with things like that. The law bites, irrespective of who you are”, noting that, that has been his call for all this while.
“Can you imagine something like this happening in Africa?” he wondered, deploring how “big men”, referring to influential people, have always had their way in an unjust society with their “unlawful things”.
On the fact that the president has been a proponent of the popular saying that ‘the wheels of justice grind slowly’, Mr Rawlings insisted that this maxim is a nonstarter as cases such as the murder of Issa Mobilla and the Ya Na Yakubu Andani II, were fraudulently investigated.
“If we cannot secure justice to be strong enough to be able to protect the citizenry of this country, then it does not matter [which party is in power]…I want to see justice to be strong enough so that irrespective of whether you are in power or out of power, whichever party you belong to [you don’t get away with you crimes.”
He was not happy with the current leadership of the party and the NDC government. He believes that the party machinery has failed to live up to the values based on which the party was founded.