General News of Monday, 1 October 2012
Source: Daily Guide
Ghana's former President, John Kufuor has personally denied reports about his death.
The rumour about Mr. Kufuor's death was all over the country, with people placing calls to close contacts and media persons to authenticate the report.
Various social media sites including facebook, twitter and BBM were on Sunday morning rife with speculations that the former president had passed on in a foreign hospital while other reports said he was bed-ridden with a terminal illness.
Sources said the rumour started on Friday and reached its peak yesterday until Mr. Kufuor broke his silence on a radio interview at midday.
The report spread fast, far and wide, compelling Ghanaian residents all over the world to place calls back home in a quest to establish its veracity.
Concerned persons however breathed a sigh of relief when the former president himself spoke to an Accra based radio station, Peace FM, to deny the ugly news in a telephone interview conducted by Akwasi Agyeman in Twi language. We reproduce a translated transcript.
Peace FM: Mr. President, how are you?
Kufour: I' m fine.
Peace FM: Mr. President where are you now?
Kufour: I'm outside the country. I have traveled for some time now for about one and half weeks.
Peace FM: There are claims and reports that you have died while others say you are ill and bed-ridden.
Kufour: Oh, I'm well. You are speaking to me and I am fit and kicking. Over the past few weeks, I have been travelling a bit. I went to Nigeria on an invitation by the Nigerian president on its independence to speak on security, development and national transformation.
From Nigeria, I went to Switzerland to speak on African business; then I traveled to Germany for an interaction on health issues where I met former presidents and Members of Parliament.
Currently, I am in Norway on a similar business. God willing, I will be back in Ghana next week.
It is almost becoming a trend in Ghana these days for persons to spark speculations about the death of leading personalities and create an unnecessary panic situation.
A couple of months ago, a similar rumour was flagged up on social media networks indicating that the former president had been struck by a deadly stroke at a time he was in Tunisia for a similar engagement before travelling to China for a conference .