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Opinions of Saturday, 18 August 2018

Columnist: Andrews Krow

Is Akufo-Addo crumbling the Rawlingsempire to establish his own?

Rawlings' power and influence is plummeting like a stone during Akufo Addo's presidency. The once powerful Rawlings empire is crumbling. What Akufo-Addo and his political strategists are destroying is a product of the post-independence years.

In the years after the June Fourth Revolution, Rawlings and his team of dedicated comrades constructed what amounted to a national spanning empire, with the active assistance of the progressive forces and organisations in the country. The immediate justification was to build an egalitarian society and politically conscious society capable of countering the imperialists and their agents- and an important secondary objective was setting up a solid economic system to ensure prosperity, manage trade, and avoid depression.

Were they able to achieve their target? Yes!!! The AFRC administration made corruption an unattractive business in our public institutions. The PNDC administration through its structural adjustment programme other models, transformed a collapsed economy to become the best on the continent. The administration settled about 90% of debt it inherited.

In spite of all these achievements, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo and his allies made several attempts to overthrow the Rawlings administration. Nana Addo constantly denigrated the Chairman of the PNDC and his government on foreign media platforms including BBC and Radio France International. He described the PNDC administration as illegal and constantly called for the removal and trial of the Chairman (Rawlings).

Rawlings remained a rock throughout his days in office and become a whole institution during and after his reign. The man was a thorn in the flesh of the NPP between 2001 and 2008 and contributed enormously to the NDC 2008 campaign that brought Mills to power. Since the days of Mills, Akufo Addo and his folks have constantly been massaging the subconscious instinct of Rawlings to render him ineffective and weak. Why?

You can picture your name on elementary school and highways; you dream of a crowd chanting your name under raining red, Gold Green. In Ghana, this means the politician must have to run a top-notch, cutthroat campaign. This requires hiring the best strategists, making calculated speeches, and pumping money into name recognition. These were the moves Akufo Addo and his team of strategists successfully executed. They have successfully succeeded in "caging" the wild dog who tormented them over the years.

The Rawlings factor was masterfully handled by Nana and his team of strategists. Thanking Chairman Rawlings and Kojo Tsikata was part of his mind game warfare, inviting Rawlings to all state functions and important ceremonies at the Presidency is part of the move, recognising Rawlings and heeding to his requests and directives is part, honouring his invitations and appointing some of his favourites is part of the move. What Rawlings wants is recognition and making the world know that he is still the political rock of Ghana. He started having problems with Kufour when the latter stopped honouring his invitations and taking orders from him. Mills suffered same ordeal when he exerted control over his government and its activities. If you talk about political empire or dynasty, even one generation probably does it.

That was what Rawlingses have established. That empire was gradually becoming a threat to the Akufo Addo dream and his (Akufo Addo) team worked on Rawlings, got him in their web and started manipulating him consciously and unconsciously. Interestingly, the former president (Rawlings) sees that strategic manipulation as official recognition. He also sees his fake recognition as an opportunity to hit at Kufour. Once you've been elected and served enough time on office, it's time to encourage the next generation to come up to bat. This is when all the hard work starts paying off for your family. Rawlings is one of the luckiest politicians on earth.

To be founder of a formidable political organisation like the NDC is no mean an achievement. Unfortunately for the man and his family, that powerful empire is crumbling. The NPP folks have succeeded in weakening the empire and rendering the once powerful political force (Rawlings) irrelevant in our contemporary politics.

Yea, so Nana Addo will start his state of the nation address with "Rawlings and his NDC,", he will tell the world the number of factions in the NDC when he addressed party folks at Cape Coast.

The fall of the Rawlings will be a massive blow against the empire. The best way to exert power is through non-coercive means. Akufo Addo represents a different tradition- a pinched, ignorant, aggressive, insecure tradition, one that insists only on repression and chest thumping belligerence matters.

What will happen to the Rawlings empire and legacy after Akufo Addo's presidency? The man Rawlings described as thief is his closest political ally today. The man who masterminded attacks on Rawlings after the 2000 election, who sponsored terrorists to overthrow the PNDC government is today the closest ally of Rawlings. Yea, they used the wife.

The NDC will forever remain a formidable political organisation. Rawlings or no Rawlings, the party will remain formidable and effective. The spiritual support of the founder is very important and some of us are still on our knees praying fervently to our maker to touch the heart and of the great man to realise the tricks being played around him by Akufo Addo and his NPP. He has a powerful legacy to protect, he has an empire to protect has an image to protect.

The Konadu factor makes the matter dicier. Rawlings has practically made the world aware that when it comes to he and the wife, no soul or entity comes between. The woman is the commander in Chief and hold the domestic keys. For 19 years Rawlings focused on transforming Ghana.

The wife handled all the businesses and deals in her private capacity and via the 31st Dec Movement. Those who think Rawlings will go against the wife's wishes are daydreaming. It is normal and most great men including Ahab suffered the same ordeal. Powerful leaders in our contemporary times are going through same manipulation.