This space endeavours to consolidate the work and thoughts of the former President of Ghana, Jerry John Rawlings. This is not his official web site, but rather an account of Jerry Rawling’s public image as expressed in participation in international and local events and as reported in the international media.
A delegation of Chiefs and Elders of the Anlo Traditional Area called on Ghana’s former President, Jerry John Rawlings on Wednesday to commiserate with him on the loss of his elderbrother Isaac Newton Nii Lante Addy.
Ghana’s former President, Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings on Sunday joined family, friends and well wishers at the Ebenezer Presbyterian Church, Kyebi, to mourn the loss of Mr. S. S. Omane former Inspector of General of Police, who was laid to rest last Saturday.
The occasion was the launch of the book: The Professor, a biography by Ashley Morrison detailing the extraordinary life of Azumah, a life Rawlings describes as “perhaps unparalleled in Ghana’s rich history.
The three-time world champion in two weight classes (two-time WBC super featherweight champion and WBC featherweight champion) is considered Africa’s greatest boxer ever, a gallant status from obscure beginnings guided by a steely determination to upset the odds.
Rawlings, who performed the book launch, urged Ghanaian youths not only to read the book but also emulate Azumah’s noble life.
The former president, tracing the history of Azumah’s exploits, recalled the challenging environment and difficult obstacles that prevailed in the country but which still proved, for the determined Azumah, opportunities enough to bring joy to his people.
“Ladies and Gentlemen: Azumah became a world champion during a very trying moment in Ghana’s history. A period when the fortunes of our country had declined to dangerous levels and drastic measures had to be taken to turn the tide and bring Ghana back to its rightful position on the continent.
“Professor Azumah Nelson almost singlehandedly flew the kite of Ghana under those trying periods and brought so much joy to millions across the country. He was an embodiment of the sense of purpose, sense of mission and unity that had gripped the nation during the revolutionary period,” Rawlings told patrons at the event held at the Alisa Hotel.
According to President Rawlings, even though the commendable performances of Ghanaian sportsmen in disciplines like athletics, football and boxing put Ghana on the world map during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s as Ghana participated in various tournaments from the All Africa Games to the Commonwealth Games through to the Olympics, “it was the genius of Azumah that sent some across the globe to check the position of Ghana on the world map.
“Azumah put Ghana on the map long before football did through the Starlets 91 group that proudly annexed the World Under-17 Cup.”
Azumah the patriot
Touching on Azumah’s philanthropic spirit and selfless devotion to the wellbeing of his fellows, Rawlings said the boxer went as far as including in his fight contracts, conditions that made it possible for his bouts to be televised live to Ghana, and he paid for TV rights from his own pocket when a contract did not accommodate that wish.
“In fulfilling his duties as a boxer Azumah was always aware of the need to provide for his family and his numerous friends and admirers who were underprivileged. And sometimes he had to achieve victory under circumstances that many would find difficult to overcome. His desire to die for Ghana and put a smile on the faces of Ghanaians played a significant role in those victories and it is gratifying to note that Azumah had a clause in his contract that ensured that all his world title fights had to be relayed directly to GBC so that Ghanaians could watch him live. When such arrangements were not in his contract he doled out thousands of dollars for the live telecast to take place.
“Such is the sense of humility and patriotism of the man we celebrate today. He has not stopped showing love and compassion to the disadvantaged. The establishment of the Azumah Nelson Foundation and the projects already underway prove how much of a blessing this proud Ghanaian has brought to our country.”
Praise for author
President Rawlings also served special praise for Author Ashley Morrison, who he said did “an excellent literary job of piecing together the Azumah story, the Azumah way – full of innocence, candour and emotion.”
He said the book not only showcases Azumah’s lineage and ancestry but also Ghana’s rich cultural history and leaves nothing out in capturing the socio-political situation that persisted especially during Azumah’s world title days.
“Ashley Morrison has done excellent research in interviewing opponents, judges, referees, promoters and other boxers and offers a varied and broad commentary on the intriguing life of the Professor as well as the controversial world of boxing.” –
ADDRESS BY H.E. JERRY JOHN RAWLINGS AT THE LAUNCH OF THE BOOK THE PROFESSOR: THE LIFE STORY OF AZUMAH NELSON ALISA HOTEL ACCRA, WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 29, 2014
The case in which former President Jerry John Rawlings is seeking to restrain Professor Kwaku Danso-Boafo, former Ambassador to the United Kingdom from launching a book on him has been adjourned to October 20.
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President and Mrs. Rawlings called on all Muslims to use “this period of sacrifice to pray for peace, unity and a renewed sense of commitment to national pride and selflessness.”
“The sense of humility and willingness to sacrifice that Eid ul Adha celebrates, should be our guiding principle as a people,” the statement said.
The Accra Fast Track High Court today adjourned to October 9, 2014, the case in which former President Jerry John Rawlings has applied for a restraining order against Prof. Kwaku Danso-Boafo, Ghana’s former-High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, from launching a book he had written about the former president.