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01.03.2007 General News

Rawlings likely to attend anniversary celebration

Rawlings likely to attend anniversary celebration
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Former President Jerry Rawlings is likely to attend Ghana's 50th anniversary celebration on the 6th of March, according to the Statesman.

Cronies close to the former President and a section of the media have in the last two weeks speculated on whether he will attend the main function following an invitation extended to him by a government delegation.

The sour relations between the former and the sitting heads of state has been cited as the reason for the delayed response from Former President Rawlings but the Statesman, an Accra daily newspaper says he would “...honour the invitation by the incumbent President to join him and other dignitaries at the Independence Square.”

The Former President's aide Mr Victor Smith in separate interviews on Joy FM's Super Morning Show and Peace FM's Kokorokoo show on Wednesday said he could not confirm whether Mr Rawlings would attend the 6th March celebrations.

The paper however says a close associate of the Former President attributes the indecision to “unfair attention” given to the country's first and current presidents while he is relegated to the background.

The Former President led the country for 19 years. Relations between him and the sitting President has not been the best since he handed over in 2001.

President Kufuor sent a high-powered delegation led by the Chairman of the Council of State, Professor Daniel Adzei-Bekoe to officially invite him to attend the 50th anniversary celebration.

The former President did not indicate whether he would attend or not but said he would give an answer later.

He left Accra to South Africa on Monday for a conference on corruption for five days. But it is unclear whether he will attend the 6th March celebration which has among other dignitaries Nigeria's Olusegun Obasanjo, Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe, Togo's Faure Gnassingbe, UK's Baroness Amos and the Duke of Kent in attendance.

Source: The Statesman