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08.06.2007 General News

Rawlings is incorruptible – Western regional June 4th leader

By myjoyonline

The Western Regional Chairman of the June 4th Movement, Mr. Herbert Henry Hans says former President J.J. Rawlings has never indulged himself in corruption and can never be corrupted.

He has therefore challenged those who have corrupt charges against him to come forward with evidence to prove it. This he noted would enable those who are following his principles to know that they are doing so blindly.

Speaking in an interview with The Chronicle in Takoradi, Mr. Hans said if Rawlings was corrupt as being bandied around, he would have been the richest man in Ghana since he was the longest ruler of this country but he never did so because of the principles he stood for.

He is now putting up his own house through his retirement benefits but here is a man who ruled this country for a long time and could have therefore used his position to siphon State funds to put up mansions for himself as it is happening now which he never did, he said adding that the former president made his name positively.

Hans regretted that even though the former president had thrown a challenge to the security agencies, the government and his critics as a whole to provide evidence to prove that he had assets abroad, nobody had been able to do so yet day in and out all sort of charges are made against him. According to him the NPP government had spent five solid years on the name Rawlings alone instead of concentrating on the development of this country.

According to Hans, the June 4th uprising was an event that sent the shivers down the spine of the ruling class in Ghana. It was also an event that broke the myth that corruption could not be held in check in Ghana. Because of this, he continued, some of them would continue to celebrate the event irrespective of what people would say.

Hans said the 31st December coup that brought the former President to power would not have been necessary if the late former President Limann bad continued the house cleaning exercise started by the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC).

To him, Mr. Rawlings came to deal with the indiscipline within the military and that it was up to Limann to continue with the house cleaning exercise among the civilian population which he failed to do. As a result, he claimed, corruption became so evident among the civilian population.

He alleged that as many as 52 Ministers in Limann's government went to London to pursue a 10 million pound loan. He said when the loan was finally secured, £6.5 million had already been spent on these Ministers.

When asked whether the former President was able to weed out corruption from the Ghanaian society, Hans said that could not be done but it is on record that corruption was reduced to its lowest level during the Provincial National Defence Council (PNDC) and National Democratic (NDC) days. He mentioned the setting up of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and the Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) by Mr. Rawlings to deal with corruption.

"Let me tell you if June 4th had come before the 1966 coup, those calling themselves today as property owners would have been made to pay for their taxes", he said. According to Hans serious corrupt practices and other indiscipline had engulfed the country but when Rawlings was in power as dictator and as a constitutionally elected president these things were at their lowest ebb. Today you read about cocaine, tomorrow you read about other bad things, these are the kind of indiscipline I am talking about, he added.

He also told The Chronicle that members of the June 4th Movement would not sit down unconcerned for the name Rawlings to be brought into disrepute by people who benefited from the overthrow of Kwame Nkrumah and his CPP government. "People benefited from properties left by the Lebanese, Syrians and Nigerians after the alien compliance order but Mr. Rawlings never did any of this", he added.

Culled from The Chronicle